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Broadcom dangles 5G promise to save Qualcomm deal

The chipmaker, trying to win over skeptics concerned about the proposed merger, vows to make the US a global leader in 5G.

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Roger Cheng Former Executive Editor / Head of News
Roger Cheng (he/him/his) was the executive editor in charge of CNET News, managing everything from daily breaking news to in-depth investigative packages. Prior to this, he was on the telecommunications beat and wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal for nearly a decade and got his start writing and laying out pages at a local paper in Southern California. He's a devoted Trojan alum and thinks sleep is the perfect -- if unattainable -- hobby for a parent.
Expertise Mobile, 5G, Big Tech, Social Media Credentials
  • SABEW Best in Business 2011 Award for Breaking News Coverage, Eddie Award in 2020 for 5G coverage, runner-up National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Award for culture analysis.
Roger Cheng
2 min read
The exterior of the Broadcom facility in Irvine, California.
Watch this: Trump blocks Broadcom-Qualcomm merger

5G promises to be the solution to everyone's problems. For Broadcom, it's the potential key to completing its hostile takeover of fellow chip maker Qualcomm. 

Qualcomm Snapdragon chip illustration

Qualcomm, with its Snapdragon processors, is the world's biggest maker of mobile chips and an attractive target for Broadcom.

Qualcomm

Broadcom, which makes chips for everything from set-top boxes to data centers, on Wednesday vowed to make the US a global leader in 5G, a next-generation cellular technology that's poised to boost wireless speeds, coverage and the ability to handle an ever more diverse deployment of connected devices. Qualcomm, which makes chips for smartphones and other mobile devices, has been at the forefront of 5G investment

"Broadcom will not only maintain the R&D resources Qualcomm devotes to 5G and innovation in future wireless standards – we will also focus R&D spend to those critical technologies that are essential to the US," Broadcom said in a statement.

The company also pledged to create a $1.5 billion fund to train and educate engineers in the US. 

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Watch this: What the heck is a 5G network?

The 5G pledge comes after a US government panel, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS) expressed concerns about Broadcom's acquisition of Qualcomm and said such a deal could pose a national security risk. Typically when CFIUS weighs in with worries, that signals the end of a potential deal. 

In this case, Qualcomm had rejected Broadcom's offer, noting that the sale price was too low.

Qualcomm declined to comment on Broadcom's Wednesday statement.

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