For years the ranking of global handset vendors was a fairly predictable exercise. Nokia was a number one, trailed by Motorola in second place and Samsung in third. Then Motorola’s persistent bout of ill health shook things up a bit, allowing Korean manufacturer Samsung to claim second position last year.
With 3G wireless broadband subscriptions forecast to exceed global DSL connections by as early as 2010, mobile carriers are slowly coming round to the realisation that the finite resources of the wireless last mile could pose some serious problems going forward.
How times have changed since the ’60s, when The Beatles were gods and music on the move was a transistor radio in the pocket. John, Paul, George and Ringo formed the first of the superbands and they were epically famous for a reason.
Next generation wifi standard 802.11n is beginning to hit the mainstream, with a steady flow of early adopters announcing plans to roll out the technology over the past couple of months.
Vodafone CEO Arun Sarin has suggested that WiMAX and LTE technologies could be merged, to reduce the burden on the industry of developing dual standards. In a keynote speech at the recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Sarin said that LTE could “provide room for TDD WiMAX.”
Finnish handset giant Nokia sent ripples through the market in late January, with the announcement of plans to acquire Scandinavian mobile Linux developer Trolltech for $153m.
We’re well into the fourth quarter/full year 2007 reporting period now, seeing a mixture of highs and lows but no great surprises.
The world’s advanced mobile markets, perhaps understandably, draw a majority share of industry attention. In these countries the latest technologies are used to showcase the most sophisticated services on the handset manufacturing community’s most cutting edge products.
In January 2007, mobile WiMAX’s high profile American champion Sprint Nextel announced that Finnish giant Nokia would be a “key infrastructure and consumer electronic device provider” for its 4G WiMAX mobility network. Sprint was expected to invest up to $800m (£414.5m) during 2007 and between $1.5bn and $2bn in 2008 on its nationwide US WiMAX network.