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Nokia says its FPGA strategy hit 5G margins, but other factors are at work too

Nokia’s CEO, Rajeev Suri, has acknowledged that the Finnish company’s 5G chip strategy is partly to blame for its falling margins, as highlighted in its recent quarterly results announcement. Margins were hurt by the high costs of its Reefshark family of chipsets, which power equipment from high end routers to base stations to Massive MIMO antennas. Although Reefshark was launched to acclaim in the engineering community, its reliance on programmable chip technology and inhouse designs makes it costly compared to platforms based on microprocessor or system-on-chip (SoC) technology. The big three network OEMS have taken differing approaches to silicon. Nokia and Huawei have remained in the tradition of designing their key chips inhouse, to give themselves control and differentiation, while…

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