Beyond 3G

What are the local mobile and telecoms developments beyond 3G? While Globe and Smart are now testing their 3G networks, let’s look at what’s beyond.

  • Mobile TV with DVB-H (Digital Video Broadcasting – Handheld). This is a separate frequency for high bandwidth one-way content. One handset supporting this is the Nokia N92. Will our local broadcast networks like ABS-CBN and GMA go for this when they aren’t even planning HDTV?
  • Generic Access Network (GAN, formerly known as UMA, Unlicensed Mobile Access). With this system, a single phone can seamlessly switch between the GSM/GPRS/3G network, and WiFi hotspots. This allows high bandwidth “mobile” data transfers over WiFi, as well as using mobile phones and “landlines” inside the house.
  • VoIP phones, both hardware and software. Telco “next generation” plans look at replacing the traditional analog handset with VoIP phones. Users can login using software soft phones on their PC but keep the same number. The system will route the call to wherever you are.
  • IPTV, covered previously

What developments are y0u looking forward to? Do they make sense in the Philippine environment?

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  • Me, looking forward to them implementing unlimited internet for mobile devices. The type where you need only pay a monthly fee, like you do for DSL right now.

  • That already exists: Globe Visibility (3G and 3.5G/HSDPA already, they say) and PLDT WeRoam.

  • PoshNeya

    @Shinrai, Im waiting for Sun to do that.

  • pinoytek

    The fundamental question is “what’s the killer app”? What will people go for? Mobile TV is an interesting application, but short-form content needs to become available. The show “24” has short-form shows through Verizon Wireless in the US. Another thing is, can pinoys *afford* TV on their mobile handsets–not everyone has cable pa nga eh.

    Besides, when will you get a chance to watch TV on your mobile phone anyway? While driving? While commuting? When you’re with your friends/family?

  • I want to watch my telenovela when I am on the road. Please deploy DVB-H!!!!

  • But how much are you willing to pay for this? Won’t terrestrial DVB-T for “HDTV” come first?

    Also, the Globe and Smart data services are flat rate I believe. Sun doesn’t even have 3G working yet.

  • if people can make calls and send messages using wifi, that does mean that smart load and globe load is about to become obsolete..? and if my thinking is correct, that does mean its the end of m-commerce as well..? and i wonder, is it just me or am i starting to sound like carrie in sex and the city..?

  • WiFi will just be another transport. The telcos will still want to charge for voice or multimedia calls – or if they don’t, charge us some other way, like a flat fee.

  • pinoytek

    WiFi has a long way to go before it can replace traditional voice and messaging. Connections are spotty and their coverage is significantly weaker. If something like WiMax gets around, however, at flat low price, then maybe things will get interesting.

    For now, leave it up to the big telcos to dictate the pace of mobile evolution in the Philippines (and mostly everywhere else in the world)

  • Or, a guerilla-type service like FON.