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UMTS Forum Recommends More Flexible Licensing Models to Facilitate Smooth and Progressive Advance to Global 3G/UMTS PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 21 November 2003

The successful implementation of 3G in Brazil and Latin America will depend on the quick migration from TDMA to GSM/GPRS/EDGE and the progression to UMTS, which will primarily be deployed in urban areas. Another factor of future 3G success in Brazil and Latin America will be the avoidance of the aggressive auctioning licence models and the adoption of flexible coverage obligations for operators. These were just two of the main messages communicated by Jean-Pierre Bienaim, chairman of the UMTS Forum during his participation at the GSM Americas congress, currently taking place in Rio de Janeiro.

Jean-Pierre also recommended that Brazil examine and learn from the experiences of its counterparts in Europe and Asia who have already deployed or are in the process of deploying 3G. He stated that Brazil could benefit greatly by adopting the best practices identified in these countries.

Bienaim went on to outline the UMTS Forum's vision of the future situation in Brazil and Latin America by stating that 3G UMTS should be introduced in an evolutionary manner and that non-aggressive licensing procedures should be adopted. Additionally Jean-Pierre stated that more flexible coverage obligations should be adhered to by operators.

Bienaim also reiterated that 3G/UMTS is now an important element of the information society and that its development should mirror the needs of society and the IT community. Bienaim cited that 3G UMTS deployment will not be the same in all countries or regions due to the differing social, cultural and economic aspects which need to be considered.

For this reason the UMTS Forum recommends that the high 3G/UMTS licensing costs that we witnessed in some countries should be avoided in Brazil. Bienaim informed that one of the options would be the "beauty contest" method of licensing, in which licenses are granted to the operators who offer more benefits to the end user.

Jean-Pierre also discussed current consumer 3G experience following service launches in Asia and Europe. He outlined the services such as online gaming, live football matches, video telephony, personal multimedia recording, streaming and audio and video downloads that almost 2 millions of 3G customers are now able to enjoy.

Within his speech Jean-Pierre also addressed the issue of WLAN and affirmed that it is a complementary technology to UMTS. He also made recommendations that WLAN should be integrated into GSM/UMTS networks in order to meet quality and security requirements that it cannot currently offer. Bienaim also outlined the benefits that this would have to WLAN users who would then be able to access their data services across the globe due to the roaming between national GSM/UMTS operators.

 
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