Qualcomm retooled its senior-level tech team, promoting James Thompson to executive vice president of engineering of Qualcomm Technologies and CTO and transitioning Matt Grob, formerly executive vice president of Qualcomm Technologies and CTO, to executive vice president of technology. Both will report to CEO Steve Mollenkopf.
In his new role, Thompson will oversee corporate R&D and engineering and will work on companywide technical and product roadmaps. Thompson has been a member of Qualcomm’s executive committee since 2012 and has been in charge of QCT’s engineering since 2004. He played a key role in developing the company’s W-CDMA, LTE, and WiFi technologies.
Grob was Qualcomm’s CTO for nearly six years. He joined Qualcomm in 1991 as an engineer and has more than 70 patents to his name.
During his time as CTO, the company pushed for the development of the 5G NR (New Radio) standard and also played a leadership role in LTE-Unlicensed (the deployment of LTE in unlicensed spectrum).
At a press event in San Diego in February, Grob talked about Qualcomm’s role in the 5G standards development. “We are trying to accelerate this process and bring it to market. We want to complete the 5G picture,” he said.
Qualcomm’s shuffle of its tech executives may be attributable to the company’s $38 billion acquisition of NXP last October. The deal is expected to close by year-end.
Jim McGregor, principal analyst at Tirias Research told EETimes, that he expects there to be a lot of executive shuffling occurring in advance of the NXP deal.
NXP makes semiconductors that are primarily used in autos, safety systems, and entertainment systems while Qualcomm makes chipsets primarily for smartphones. The combination of the two companies is viewed as a big win for 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), and connected cars.