updated 05:10 pm EDT, Wed April 21, 2010
Leak hints Agnilux to help with Google TV, tablets
Google's buyout of Agnilux was motivated by a desire to port Android and Chrome to other devices, a source said Wednesday. The former PA Semi workers reportedly made the swap not to make hardware but to help Google's OS platforms run on hardware they don't normally use. This could include the Android-based Google TV set-top box and more efficient tablets.
The startup's specialty in its brief lifespan had been modular semiconductor technology that could intelligently alter the power draw in a thin design like a tablet, the tipster said. It's speculated by the New York Times that Agnilux would help Google move software on to a tablet while optimizing battery life as it moves from device to device.
Agnilux had been started just after Apple acquired PA Semi in 2008 and is now rumored to have come after staff, including the founder, disagreed over compensation during the transition. It largely went quiet afterwards and is now suspected of having actively sought out a stakeholder or a partnership to gain ground.
The deal sets up Google as more of a competitor in the mobile space than it has already, as most Android tablets shown so far are simply using the unmodified mobile OS on a larger screen and can suffer as a result. PA Semi's contributions to the iPad may have helped it push battery life to over 10 hours.