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• Alcatel Microelectronics, GlobespanVirata, Ikanos Communications, STMicroelectronics and Zarlink Semiconductor working together to assure interoperability of DMT-based VDSL systems


• Interoperability is key to accelerating the mass-market deployment

GlobespanVirata Corporation (NASDAQ:GSPN) Alcatel Microelectronics
(Paris:CGEP.PA/NYSE:ALA), Ikanos Communications (Fremont, California), STMicroelectronics (NYSE:STM) and Zarlink Semiconductor (NYSE/TSE:ZL) today announced the Discrete Multi-Tone (DMT) - Very-high-data rate Digital Subscriber Line (DMT-VDSL) initiative, with the goal of producing interoperable DMT-based semiconductors that meet international standards for broadband VDSL.


The DMT-VDSL initiative is committed to DMT as the line coding technology of choice for the delivery of more reliable, higher quality VDSL-based data, video and voice services to homes and businesses. The five member companies are independently developing VDSL chipsets based on DMT modulation technology as adopted by European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). These member companies have agreed to achieve verifiable interoperability this year between their respective products, using the ITU-T's (International Telecommunications Union) standard band plans, including Plan 998 and Plan 997, at speeds up to 52 Mb/s.


Achieving joint interoperability will boost the number of products that meet global specifications, and accelerate the market for VDSL solutions by increasing choice and lowering costs for equipment manufacturers.


VDSL is an emerging standard for symmetrical and asymmetrical transmission in support of full-service access network applications including data, video and voice channels, plus high-speed Internet - at up to 52 Mb/s using existing copper telephone lines.


In real-world conditions, noise and other line interference degrades signal integrity, impacting the speed and distance of VDSL transmission. DMT modulation overcomes this interference by configuring the transmitted signal in real-time to match the line conditions. The result is higher quality, error-reduced communications at higher data rates over longer distances. Tests show that VDSL modems and other products designed with DMT-based components will deliver significantly improved speed and distance performance.


Carriers have already standardized on DMT for their Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) transmission. According to Dell'Oro Group, a market research firm that specializes in strategic competitive analysis in the networking industry, the number of DSL subscribers on a worldwide basis will reach 32 million by year-end 2002. DMT-VDSL fits seamlessly into the carriers' existing DMT infrastructure, making DMT-VDSL a pragmatic extension of their current service offerings.


"Concerning wide-scale deployment of high data rate and video delivery over copper pairs, backward compatibility of the DMT modulation with existing ADSL deployment is essential," said Leon Cloetens, vice president and general manager, wireline division at Alcatel Microelectronics. "Our long history in DSL deployment has lead to an understanding of the importance of modulation and spectrum compatibility for technology scalability. Industry wide, interoperable solutions will be a key element to enable high volume deployment of future applications in broadband access technology."


"This announcement highlights a major industry initiative driving the standardization of a DMT-based line coding technique for VDSL and we are pleased to be at the forefront of this critical technology development," said Angelo Stephano, vice president of marketing for GlobespanVirata. "Standardizing on a single line code will drive interoperability, which will be a key driver for large scale VDSL deployment."


"DMT-VDSL technology offers the superior performance which is required for carriers to provide high-speed data, voice, and video services to their subscribers," said Behrooz Rezvani, founder and chief technical officer of Ikanos Communications. "Standardizing on DMT technology will allow carriers to leverage their existing DMT infrastructure and maximize subscriber revenue."


"DMT-VDSL is a natural extension of our successful business in ADSL chipsets," said Pietro Palella, general manager, STMicroelectronics' Wireline Communications Division. "It is clear now that DMT was the right choice for ADSL and now we are confident that it will also be the optimal solution for VDSL."


"The communications industry knows that DMT line coding is a superior technology for maximizing speed and distance performance in VDSL modems and other products," said Andrew Faulkner, VDSL product manager, Zarlink Semiconductor. "This announcement on interoperability indicates that the industry leaders are committed to delivering powerful, cost-effective DMT-based silicon that will benefit customers."



For more information from GlobespanVirata , please contact:

Claire Smither
Nelson Bostock Communications
Tel: +44 (0)20 7229 4400
claire.smither@nelsonbostock.com


About Alcatel


Alcatel designs, develops and builds innovative and competitive communications networks, enabling carriers, service providers and enterprises to deliver any type of content, such as voice, data and multimedia, to any type of consumer, anywhere in the world. Relying on its leading and comprehensive products and solutions portfolio, stretching from end-to-end optical infrastructures, fixed and mobile networks to broadband access, Alcatel's customers can focus on optimizing their service offerings and revenue streams. With sales of EURO 25 billion in 2001 and 99,000 employees, Alcatel operates in more than 130 countries.


For more information, visit Alcatel on the Internet: http://www.alcatel.com


About GlobespanVirata


GlobespanVirata is a leading provider of integrated circuits, software and system designs for broadband applications that enable the high-speed transmission of data, voice and video over copper telephone lines. GlobespanVirata delivers complete high-speed, cost effective and flexible DSL chipset solutions to more than 300 global customers that manufacture broadband access equipment for businesses and consumers.


GlobespanVirata is one of the world's largest organizations dedicated primarily to DSL and related broadband technology. The company applies the industry's longest history in DSL research and development, as well as over 15 years of field experience, to offer unparalleled customer support and to successfully bring its proven broadband solutions to market.


About Ikanos Communications


Founded in 1999 and based in Silicon Valley, Ikanos Communications has created a new class of silicon that serves the entire range of worldwide broadband markets and applications with a single programmable chipset. Ikanos' industry-leading solution includes the SmartLeap(tm) 8100 for broadband access concentrators and the CleverConnect(tm) 150 for Customer Premise Equipment. These chipsets form an end-to-end broadband solution that enables access equipment vendors to serve many different customers while slashing time to market and lowering development, manufacturing, and inventory costs. Ikanos also offers the Ikanos Programmable Operating
System(tm) (iPOS) that consists of firmware and APIs. iPOS enables equipment vendors to dynamically configure LRFE, EFM, VDSL-DMT 998, VDSL-DMT 997, and VDSL-DMT Flex on Ikanos chipsets.


Ikanos Communications provides comprehensive offerings that encompass silicon, embedded software, reference designs, high-level APIs, and extensive documentation. Ikanos is a member of, and contributes to, ANSI, the IEEE 802.3 EFM Study Group, DSL Forum, and ITU-T. For additional information about Ikanos Communications, please visit the company's Web site at http://www.ikanos.com or contact Richard Sekar at 1.510.438.6208 or rsekar@ikanos.com


About ST Microelectronics


STMicroelectronics, the world's third largest independent semiconductor company, is a global leader in developing and delivering semiconductor solutions across the spectrum of microelectronics applications. An unrivalled combination of silicon and system expertise, manufacturing strength, IP portfolio and strategic partners positions the Company at the forefront of System-on-Chip (SoC) technology and its products play a key role in enabling today's convergence markets. The Company shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange, on Euronext Paris and on the Milan Stock Exchange. In 2001, the Company's net revenues were $6.36 billion and net earnings were $257.1 million.

Further information on ST can be found at http://www.st.com .



About Zarlink Semiconductor


Zarlink employs its formidable analog, digital and mixed-signal capabilities to offer the most compelling products for wired, wireless and optical connectivity markets and ultra low-power medical applications.


For more information, visit http://www.zarlink.com

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