Companies unite for mobile broadband

Friday, 10 October, 2008

A GSMA-led collaboration with 16 IT and mobile companies aims to create a new category of always-connected mobile broadband devices to provide an alternative to WiFi.

In the first phase of this initiative, mobile operators, PC manufacturers and chipset providers will pre-install mobile broadband into a range of notebook PCs that will be ready to switch on and use straight out of the box.

To support this, the GSMA has created the mobile broadband service mark, a global identifier that will help users identify the array of ‘ready to run’ mobile broadband devices.

Integrating mobile broadband into notebook PCs is the first step in a wider strategy to deliver wireless internet access and management to a whole range of previously unconnected devices — from cameras and MP3 players to refrigerators, cars and set-top boxes.

"While there will always be a place for WiFi connectivity, the great merit of mobile broadband might be that it liberates the user from the spatial tyranny of the so-called 'hotspot',” said Shiv K Bakhshi, IDC director of mobility research.

More than 55 million people subscribe to mobile broadband services in 91 countries, a number expected to grow by four million per month by the end of 2008, according to Wireless Intelligence.

Launch participants include: 3 Group, Asus, Dell, ECS, Ericsson, Gemalto, Lenovo, Microsoft, Orange, Qualcomm, Telefónica Europe, Telecom Italia, TeliaSonera, T-Mobile, Toshiba and Vodafone.


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