Qualcomm ( QCOM) raised its quarterly dividend by 6% Tuesday, sending its shares higher in afternoon trading.

The San Diego-based wireless technology company said it will increase quarterly dividend payments by a penny to 17 cents a share, effective for dividends payable after March 27. The move lifts the annual dividend to 68 cents a share, Qualcomm said.

"Despite the uncertain global economic environment, we continue to execute on our strategic objectives, driving strong operating cash flows, enabling us to return capital to stockholders through stock repurchases and dividends," CEO Paul Jacobs said in a statement.

Word of the dividend increase came hours before Qualcomm's annual shareholder meeting.

Additionally, Jacobs has been elected chairman of Qualcomm's board. His father, Irwin Mark Jacobs, co-founder and CEO from 1985 to 2005, has decided to step down from his position as chairman immediately, but he will continue to serve as a member of the board.

Qualcomm shares were gaining $1.09, or 3.3%, to $33.88.

Several other wireless technology companies were on the rise, as well. Nokia ( NOK) was climbing 6.6%, Texas Instruments ( TXN) added 4.5%, and Broadcom ( BRCM) shares were up 3.1%.

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