picoChip and Cambridge Consultants collaborate on LTE Femtocell platform enhancement

Cambridge Consultants’ experience and technical expertise critical to supporting rapid turnaround of complex design challenge

Bath & Cambridge UK – XX September 2010 picoChip, the leading supplier of semiconductors and software for femtocells, has collaborated with Cambridge Consultants, a leading technology product design and development firm, to enhance its PC960x LTE development platform. The enhancements deliver further optimisations to the PC960x platform for ‘small cell’ basestation architectures. picoChip has been an active contributor to the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) on the deployment of LTE, improving the scalability and flexibility of dense deployments of small cells in LTE networks. The recent work with Cambridge Consultants has helped to turn those ideas into commercial reality.

This collaboration is the latest in a long history of partnership between the companies. Cambridge Consultants and picoChip have previously worked together to deliver wireless infrastructure solutions for standards-based products, for proprietary technologies as well as military and defence customers. In some cases this has been development of completely new products, for example Iridium Communications Inc’s satellite system. In others, it has involved working together to enhance the performance and extend the capabilities of picoChip’s standards-compliant reference designs to enable customers to create differentiated, unique products such as specialist femtocells.

“As the femtocell market heats up our customers are turning to us to provide platforms that help them get to market faster with ever greater degrees of differentiation. Cambridge Consultants has been invaluable to us in enabling us to offer a range of extra features and capabilities based on our core technology,” said David Maidment, Director of Product Management at picoChip.

“For this latest collaboration we knew that, with a broadband wireless technology as demanding as LTE, and with very high market expectation, we required a partner that we could truly rely on. We had full confidence that Cambridge Consultants could deliver exactly what we needed, when we needed it, to expand the capabilities of our LTE offering in what were very demanding timescales.  Their ability to work closely with us and their approach to development ensured that we got the quality that our customers expect.”

LTE is the first cellular standard to achieve global acceptance.  It promises to deliver higher capacity and lower operational costs for network operators, to allow them to continue to expand their mobile broadband services and reach even more customers.  Small cells are seen as an essential tool for mobile operators to deliver both capacity and coverage to users wherever they are.  picoChip is the recognised market leader in small-cell technology, and the company’s LTE platform enables this new and exciting capability for many more product suppliers.

“The enhancements picoChip was targeting represented a significant engineering challenge for both companies,” commented Tim Fowler, Commercial Director in Cambridge Consultants’ wireless division. “However, we have been working with picoChip and their devices for many years now and our experience of their platform, combined with our rigorous development process, meant that we were able to help picoChip quickly and efficiently achieve their targets.”

The PC960x is the world’s first full hardware and software development platform for LTE femtocells, delivering quick and simple development and prototyping to customers and bringing together full evaluation and prototyping capabilities. The PC960x accelerates time to market of small form factor LTE products (“Home eNode B”) optimised for metropolitan, enterprise and residential applications.

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Cambridge Consultants develops breakthrough products, creates and licenses intellectual property, and provides business consultancy in technology critical issues for clients worldwide.  For 50 years, the company has been helping its clients turn business opportunities into commercial successes, whether they are launching first-to-market products, entering new markets or expanding existing markets through the introduction of new technologies.  With a team of over 300 engineers, designers, scientists and consultants, in offices in Cambridge (UK) and Boston (USA), Cambridge Consultants offers solutions across a diverse range of industries including medical technology, industrial and consumer products, transport, energy, cleantech and wireless communications.  

Throughout 2010, Cambridge Consultants celebrates its 50th year in business.  Created by three Cambridge graduates in 1960, the company has grown into a leading technology business, renowned worldwide for its ability to solve technical problems and provide innovative, practical solutions to commercial issues.  In 2009, the company was awarded the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade.  For more information visit: www.CambridgeConsultants.com

Cambridge Consultants is part of Altran, the European leader in innovation and high technology consulting.  The Group’s 17,500 consultants, operating worldwide, cover the entire range of engineering specialities, including electronics, information technology, quality and organisation.  Altran offers its clients ongoing support throughout the innovation cycle, from technology watch, applied basic research and management consulting to industrial systems engineering and information systems.  The Group provides services to most industries, including the automotive, aeronautics, space, life sciences and telecommunications sectors.  Founded in 1982, Altran operates in 20 priority countries.  In 2008, it generated a turnover of €1,650 million.  For more information visit: www.altran.com

picoChip Limited (picoChip) is enabling the next generation of wireless infrastructure. Its picoXcell™ family of optimized silicon devices is the leader in the fast growing market for femtocell access points. Its picoArray™ family of flexible wireless processors is the leading solution for OFDMA-based network equipment, and is backed by comprehensive software support for global standards such as EDGE, HSPA, HSPA+, TD-SCDMA, WiMAX, LTE, cdma2000 and GSM. Located in Bath, UK and Beijing, China, picoChip is re-shaping mobile networks.  For further information please visit www.picochip.com

For further information, please contact: 


Cambridge Consultants

George Griffiths

Press and Communications Manager

+44 1223 420024

Reveal email address

European PR     

Ben Smith


+44 20 8408 8000    



Travis Small

Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications

+1 617 391-9654


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