Tripping over cords and cables is one of those things that can ruin a virtual reality experience. Mobile VR setups may offer inferior graphical quality compared to the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, but they also have the cabling situation mostly sorted out. AMD has now acquired intellectual property and engineering staff from Austin-based wireless specialist Nitero, in a presumed effort to untangle users of PC VR systems from their mess of cables.
Nitero's website doesn't mention specific products, but the company apparently has specialized expertise in multi-gigabit wireless communication over a 60 GHz band. According to AMD, millimeter-wave wireless systems are often limited to line-of-sight applications, but Nitero's phased array beamforming technology can reportedly make 60 GHz wireless comms flexible enough for use with moving VR headsets.
AMD didn't disclose the terms of the deal. The company's press release does note that Nitero co-founder and CEO Pat Kelly has now assumed the title of corporate vice-president of Wireless IP at AMD.
This acquisition furthers AMD's long bet on VR. The promise of VR gaming has played a large role in the marketing of the company's recent graphics products. In particular, the company repeatedly mentioned the reduction of the cost of a VR-capable system when it launched its Radeon RX 480 graphics card last summer.