What is Qualcomm?

   

Qualcomm is an American telecommunications company. Originally dealing in truck fleet management and satellite tracking, Qualcomm developed CDMA radio signal technology that would allow many users to access a satellite's resources on the same frequency. This technology proved useful for cellphone applications in particular, catapulting Qualcomm to the forefront of that field. In addition to developing the CDMA protocol and seeing to it's ratification as an international standard, Qualcomm manufactures and sells related cellular hardware such as processors and antennas. Additionally, the company has maintained the Eudora email client from 1991 until 2006. The company signed a 20-year agreement with the city of San Diego for naming rights to the San Diego-Jack Murphy Stadium. The stadium was then renamed Qualcomm Stadium. Fortune magazine named Qualcomm one of the 20 best companies to work for in 2007.

Qualcomm logo

Qualcomm's first product, the OmniTRACS mobile communications system, was designed to help truck drivers and their base stations keep in touch. Truck fleet maintainers could track their vehicle's exact position, and could even communicate with the driver via satellite link. In order to extract the most possible use out of each expensive satellite, Qualcomm developed a frequency-sharing method where many different devices could communicate with a single satellite at the same time, on the same frequency. Called Code Division Multiple Access, the system revolutionized bandwidth conservation. CDMA was quickly adopted to more conventional, land-based antenna cellular phone applications. This gave Qualcomm a head start in the cellular field, and today almost every major cellphone manufacturer uses Qualcomm technology and components in their telephones.



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