Texas Instruments - Wireless Business Outlook

Saturday, March 29, 2008

[Originally for Sramana Mitra's site]

In the past two segments on TI, I have presented my perspective of TI’s wireless strategy. Let us now look at how this will impact the company’s revenue outlook over the next few years.

With the current indicators, it appears that TI’s wireless business will not grow appreciably over the next five years. I expect the growth to be between 1-2%. The connectivity solutions will also lose their overall market share. This number just does not seem right considering the opportunity that 3G presents. But then, a combination of TI’s flawed (IMHO) baseband strategy and the competition will likely take the teeth off TI’s wireless program.

The savior, however, will be the OMAP business. Though the company’s market share will likely reduce from its current 65% to about 40-50%, the volumes achieved by the growth in 3G will reduce the impact of this loss. I expect OMAP-related revenue to double in the next five years. Note, however, that retaining the high market share will also be contingent on EMP, Nokia and Motorola using OMAP for a majority of their 3G platforms. Further, if TI can work out a partnership agreement with someone like Interdigital, for example, then perhaps it can leverage its complimentary OMAP solution to provide a very competent bundle for smartphones that Nokia may pounce at. More on this thread of thought can be found here.

Thanks to the OMAP business, I estimate that wireless will continue to contribute around a third of TI’s revenues into the next decade. But this will not yield anywhere close to what could have been obtained had TI played its cards right. If TI maintains its current market share, the wireless revenues will have grown at a much higher rate (around 10%).

Wireless, it seems to me, is a missed opportunity for TI today. In the concluding part of this series on TI, I will provide my valuation of the company and briefly discuss its future outlook in the context of all the details that I have laid out so far.

[Long IDCC at the time of writing]

Posted by Vijay Nagarajan at 10:00 PM  

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