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					Vancouver Economic Development Commission | British Columbia, Canada




                                                       WIRELESS
                                                        VANCOUVER’S WIRELESS INDUSTRY
                                                                                                                                                    INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




INDUSTRY PROFILE:
VANCOUVER’S WIRELESS INDUSTRY

September 2009
Author: John Friesen
Report produced for the Vancouver Economic Development Commission (VEDC).




Contents


I. CONTEXT ............................................................................ 3
THE WORLD IS GOING WIRELESS .......................................................................................... 3

VANCOUVER’S COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES ........................................................................... 3

INDUSTRY OVERVIEW .......................................................................................................... 3

INDUSTRY SNAPSHOT ......................................................................................................... 4
Revenues....................................................................................................................................... 4
Workforce...................................................................................................................................... 4
Innovation,.Commercialization.and.Markets..................................................................................... 4
                                                                                                                                                        VEDC
INDUSTRY SUB-SECTORS .................................................................................................... 4                             Suite 1620 - 1075 West Georgia Street
                                                                                                                                                        Vancouver, BC Canada
WIRELESS DEVICES ............................................................................................................. 4                        Toll Free: 1 866 632 9668
                                                                                                                                                        www.vancouvereconomic.com
Notable.Companies......................................................................................................................... 4

WIRELESS NETWORKS......................................................................................................... 6
Notable.Companies......................................................................................................................... 6

WIRELESS APPLICATIONS .................................................................................................... 6
Notable.companies......................................................................................................................... 6

COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES – VANCOUVER WIRELESS SECTOR .............................................. 8

WIRELESS ASSOCIATIONS AND ORGANIZATIONS.................................................................... 8

GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS ............................................................................................ 9

UNIVERSITIES – KNOWLEDGE AND TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER ................................................ 10

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS....................................................................................................... 11




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                                                                                                                                                            INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




I. CONTEXT
THE WORLD IS GOING WIRELESS
As the use of the Internet has grown – exponentially since
the mid-1990s – individuals and companies are increasingly
moving from tied-down home and office computers to
lightweight laptop computers, smart phones and other mobile
devices. World business, especially, is moving online and is
moving there wirelessly.
Demand for wireless devices, networks and applications
remains positive. In some technology areas, such as mobile




                                                                                                                                                                                                PHOTO: FOTOLIA
and cellular data, mobile messaging, wireless LAN and RFID,
worldwide demand has never been stronger with expected
growth rates in 2009 ranging from 17% to 98%. A 2008
Government of Canada report estimates worldwide spending
in those areas in 2009 at more than (US) $204 billion.                                                      Fraser University, and the BC Institute of Technology.
Demand in other areas, such as carrier services and                                                      ›› Vancouver has ready access to major markets in the USA,
handsets, is growing more slowly, but worldwide spending on                                                 Asia and the Pacific Rim
them will likely exceed another $200 billion.                                                            ›› Vancouver’s climate and setting are highly attractive to
According to the Wireless Innovation Network of British                                                     prospective employees. Plus, Canadian immigration policies
Columbia (WINBC) wireless companies here occupy every                                                       are not as stringent as those in the US, giving the wireless
conceivable niche in the wireless value chain, including those                                              sector here a distinct recruiting advantage
noted above. WINBC calls the wireless cluster “a balanced                                                ›› The BC government has committed to investing in the
industry, characterized by diverse technologies spanning a                                                  wireless sector. For instance, over the next 10 years it has
spectrum of sectors.” WINBC is the non-profit association                                                   allocated $120 million a year to provide broadband access
directly representing the interests of over 100 wireless and                                                across the province.
wireless-related companies and helping to provide support,                                               ›› It also spends some $350 million a year in total on
services and information to the entire sector in BC.                                                        purchasing IT products and services, mostly from local
                                                                                                            technology companies.
The Greater Vancouver wireless cluster is increasingly
viewed throughout the world as a notable centre of wireless                                              ›› The province of BC enjoys low corporate tax rates – the
innovation and expertise.                                                                                   second lowest in Canada for small corporations
                                                                                                         ›› The general corporate tax rate in the province has been
Wireless Value Chain – reprinted courtesy of WINBC                                                          cut by 33% since 2001 and tax credits are generous and
VANCOUVER’S COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES                                                                          readily available in such areas as venture capital, industrial
                                                                                                            property taxes and training.
  ›› Greater Vancouver is home to three world-class educational
     institutions: The University of British Columbia, Simon                                              ›› Vancouver is an historic leader in the wireless domain with
                                                                                                                                              industry frontrunners such
                                                                                                                                              as MPR Teltech, MDI and
                                                                                                                                              Sierra Wireless among
                                                                                                Enterprise-                                   many others. Vancouver is
                                         s
                                             ice
   Engineering Services




                                                   Wireless Data Center




                                                                          Enabling Software &




                                                                                                   Class
                                                   Operators & MVNOs




                                                                                                                                              also home to a tremendous
                                                                                                                  Content & Portals
                                          Dev




                                                                                                                                          Retail Services




                                                                                                 Solutions                                    talent pool of experienced
                          Components




                                                                                Services




                                                                                                                                              professionals.

                                                                                                                                                                   INDUSTRY OVERVIEW
                                            ture




                                                                                                 Carrier-
                                          ruc




                                                                                                                                                                   Leading edge, BC-
                                                                                                  Class
                                           ast




                                                                                                                                                                   developed, wireless
                                                                                                Solutions
                                       Infr




                                                                                                                                                                   technology is contributing
                                                                                                                                                                   to the efficiencies and
                                                                                                                                                                   competitiveness of
                                                   Management,                                                                                                     companies in other
                                                    Marketing,                                                                         Industry                    industrial sectors
              Educational                                                                                Associations
                                       Investors    Accounting                          Government                                    Standards                    throughout the province
              Institutions                                                                               & Alliances
                                                     & Legal                                                                            Groups                     and around the world.
                                                    Consultants


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                                                                                                       INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




The Vancouver wireless cluster is a vital legacy from the late-             ›› BC-based talent is readily available. 89% of companies
1960s, 1970s and 1980s, when companies such as MacDonald                       say they are able to find the caliber of experienced hires
Dettwiler, Mobile Data Inc., Microtel Pacific Research (MPR)                   they need; 80% are satisfied with the skills and attitudes of
and Sierra Systems played important global roles satellite                     recent graduates
and mobile data research, development, devices and services.                ›› Companies said it was easier to find RF, hardware and
Those companies laid a solid foundation of design, technical,                  software engineers compared with skilled workers in EMI/
management and marketing expertise, which today’s thriving                     EMC testing, propagation and channel modeling, and
wireless cluster has built upon.                                               standards compliance

WINBC reports that BC now has some 500 companies in the                     ›› Management skills in shortest supply are partner/channel
                                                                               development, executive management and sales.
wireless space – half directly involved in wireless technology
and half in related businesses. Over 100 of those companies               Innovation,.Commercialization.and.Markets
are located in the Greater Vancouver area, which consists of                ›› BC companies are developing solutions based upon
Vancouver, North and South Vancouver, Burnaby, Coquitlam,                      emerging and potentially revolutionary wireless technologies
Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Richmond, Delta and Surrey.                        such as LTE, WiFi, Ultrawideband, WiMAX. MIMO and RFID.
The Vancouver cluster has most, if not all, of the requisite                ›› Nearly $40M was spent on R&D in 2004, increasing to over
components for a healthy, thriving wireless cluster. It has                    $65M in 2006; however, those figures are down from $118 M
people with specialized skills and experience in radio                         spent in 2001.
technologies, telecommunications standards, product design,                 ›› 84% of companies have reference customers; 16% are still
project and product management, software development, and                      developing technology and looking for customers.
more. It has helped establish wireless technologies as part of              ›› BC companies sell into over 30 different vertical markets
the engineering and scientific curricula at local universities,                and have customers all around the world, the top markets
and it has sparked the creation and funding of related                         being Canada, the US and Western Europe.
research and development. In short, the Vancouver cluster
                                                                          Critical success factors for the industry’s growth include its
has created a unique and innovative environment for wireless
                                                                          ability to execute sales and to gain access to target markets
companies.
                                                                          and technology.
INDUSTRY SNAPSHOT
                                                                          INDUSTRY SUB-SECTORS
In 2007, WINBC and PricewaterhouseCoopers release their
                                                                          Although there are a number of specific sub-sectors (see the
BC Wireless Industry Survey, providing an eye-opening look at
                                                                          Wireless Value Chain below), the industry often describes its
size, health and prospects of the industry. For instance:
                                                                          different activities under the heading DNA, which stands for
  1. Revenues reached $1 billion for the first time                       Devices, Networks and Applications. Although those divisions
  2. The average age of responding companies was 11 years                 seem clear, not all companies can be placed exclusively in
     (excluding major carriers)                                           one given DNA sub-sector.
  3. 42% of companies are in a growth stage; 47% are in pre-
                                                                          WIRELESS DEVICES
     commercial, early-commercial or restart phases
  4. After years of rapid growth, a more mature cluster will likely       Vancouver has a large pool of well-trained, well-educated
     emerge around 2010                                                   people, capable of competing on the world stage in designing,
                                                                          developing and commercializing wireless devices. Local
  5. 76% of companies are privately held; 18% are publicly
                                                                          infrastructure is generally in excellent condition and there are
     traded.
                                                                          ample supplies of affordable power. Although the number of
Revenues                                                                  companies is fairly small, this sub-sector does include some
  ›› Estimated at over $1 billion dollars CDN (not including              of the largest non-carrier companies in the sector.
     major carriers).
                                                                          Devices designed and manufactured by Vancouver-area
  ›› That represents an increase of 54% over 2004, with 20%
                                                                          wireless companies include:
     growth forecast for 2009
  ›› Over half of companies surveyed indicated they were cash-              ››Cellular phones                ››WiMAX devices
     flow positive.
                                                                            ››Smart phones                   ››Radio Frequency devices
  ›› The top five revenue generating areas were engineering
     services, enabling software and services, professional                 ››Bluetooth devices              ››Wireless modems
     services, devices and enterprise-class solutions.                      ››WiFi (wireless LAN) devices    ››Security & signaling devices
  ›› Companies, collectively, are seeking nearly $130 million in
                                                                            ››Mesh network equipment
     new investments by the end of 2010.
Workforce                                                                 Notable.Companies
  ›› Estimated at more than 6,000 (including major carriers)              Sierra Wireless - Sierra Wireless has recently demonstrated
  ›› 75% of employees have a university level degree or higher            the world’s fastest wireless modem technology for HSPA+
     including; 24% have graduate degrees                                 (High Speed Packet Access) – the USB 306 modem. HSPA+

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                                                                                                INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




provides end-users with higher peak rates, lower latency,
extended talk time and overall faster, full access to their
favorite social networking and online applications wherever
they go.
On March 26, 2009, Magneti Marelli, part of the Fiat Group,
announced it has selected Sierra Wireless mobile broadband
embedded modules for integration into its telematics
products. Once of its first offerings is the integrated Sierra
Wireless MC5727V embedded module, now available to Ford
customers. The module provides high-speed internet access,
location based services, and fleet tracking and management
capabilities.
Sierra Wireless was founded in 1993 and quickly gained a




                                                                                                                                      PHOTO: FOTOLIA
reputation for developing superior wireless products such as
wireless modems, Aircards for wireless access to wide area
networks, embedded modules for wireless data services, and
embedded network software.
Over the last four years the company has enjoyed rapid               In recent years, the company has designed and produced
growth due to burgeoning demand for its wireless services            innovative wireless solutions to speed the flow of transit
and devices. In 2008, the company estimates revenues of over         vehicles. Using mesh networks – effectively, wireless
$500,000,000, up from $200,000,000 in 2006 and $100,000,000          Metropolitan Area Networks, or MANs – Novax enables transit
in 2005.                                                             vehicles to activate or prolong green lights along key transit
www.sierrawireless.com                                               corridors in Vancouver, Toronto and Edmonton.

Nokia Canada – Nokia opened its R&D facility in Vancouver            Since these TSP (Traffic Signal Priority) solutions are
in 1999 and has since become recognized as the leading               wireless, Novax proposes piggybacking municipal WiFi onto
designer and developer of cellular handsets in Canada. The           TSP networks. A trial project is now underway on a new TSP
N96 Smartphone was designed and developed entirely in                corridor in Vancouver.
Vancouver.                                                           Novax designs its own networks and manufactures its
Nokia, itself is the world’s largest producer of cellular            own network devices adapting and using off-the-shelf
handsets. Recently, as handset sales have flattened,                 subcomponents.
worldwide, Nokia Canada has diversified significantly into           www.novax.com
services and software, maintaining its position as the third         Cypress Solutions – Wireless fleet tracking and equipment
largest research centre in the world for Nokia.                      monitoring www.cypress.bc.ca
In 2007, Nokia acquired NAVTEQ, a leading provider of                Dyaptive Systems – Manufactures performance testing and
digital map information for navigation. Last fall, Nokia             optimization equipment for profitably wireless networks;
Canada bought Montreal-based Oz Communications, giving               currently has equipment installed with top-tier wireless
it an affordable mass market email and instant message               infrastructure equipment manufacturers and wireless service
platform. The company has also developed first and third             providers.
party publishing agreements with game developers such as
                                                                     www.dyaptive.com
Electronic Arts and Digital Chocolate to migrate their games
to Nokia mobile phones.                                              GPS Industries – WiFi enabled GPS business solutions. GPS
                                                                     Industries has introduced a leading-edge GPS application for
Nokia now offers 5 key wireless services:
                                                                     golf courses.
  1. Mail & Messaging                                                 www.gpsindustries.com
  2. Music
                                                                     Ionocom – Electronic product design and prototyping
  3. Media                                                           www.ionocom.com
  4. Games                                                           Methusala Microcells – Micro fuel cells for wireless devices
  5. Maps                                                            www.methusala.com
www.nokia.ca                                                         Orcatron Communications – Manufactures Digital Signal
Novax Industries Corporation – Since 1981, Novax has been            Processor based wireless underwater communication
designing, producing and installing a variety of intelligent         systems, which use transducers to convert speech to and
traffic and pedestrian control devices in cities across North        from ultrasound signals.
America.                                                             www.orcatron.com


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                                                                                                 INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




Quino Solutions Inc. – Develops and manufactures RF                   In 2004, telecom analyst N. Moore Capital Ltd. ranked TELUS
devices for asset tracking. Their Ranger brand devices are            Mobility as the top wireless carrier in North America, based
GPS based and are noteworthy for ease of installation, long           on client satisfaction and new subscriber additions. TELUS
battery life, large data capacity and an interface to Google          Mobility currently serves over 5.3 million clients across
Earth for viewing the data. The company is currently seeking          Canada and employs over 6,000 people.
distributors and resellers.                                            http://www.telusmobility.com/
www.quino.ca                                                          Glentel – One of the largest multi-carrier retailers in
                                                                      Canada, providing North America-wide wireless data and
Sendum Wireless – Designs and manufactures wireless
                                                                      voice solutions. Its business division provides integrated
location devices for the LBS services market. Products
                                                                      wireless solutions for public safety, government and business
include package and asset tracking devices.
                                                                      customers, including designing and commissioning wireless
www.sendum.com
                                                                      networks for terrestrial radio systems, satellite network
SilverTip Marine – Marine monitoring, alarm and security              services, and advanced mobile solutions.
systems www.silvertipmarine.com                                       www.glentel.com
Tranzeo Wireless Technologies Inc. – Manufactures high-               MetroBridge Networks Corporation – provides more than
performance wireless network equipment that allows                    2,000 square kilometers of broadband wireless access to
communities and businesses to communicate without                     businesses in Vancouver and surrounding regions, delivering
conventional telecommunications or cable infrastructure.              up to 1 Gbps in the urban core. The company has engineered
The company produces a spectrum of point-to-point and                 some of the largest and most complex wireless projects in the
point-to-multipoint radios, WiMAX equipment, and mesh                 world, including the Vancouver International Airport WLAN.
network equipment for wireless internet service providers,            www.metrobridge.com
governments, campuses, military, carriers, enterprise
                                                                      Fatport – Lays claim to being the largest public Wi-Fi provider
customers, and systems integrators around the globe.
                                                                      in Canada.
www.tranzeo.com                                                       www.fatport.com
WIRELESS NETWORKS                                                     Tantalus Systems - Develops, manufactures and markets two-
                                                                      way data communications networks for electric, water and
There is a broad assortment of wireless network types and
                                                                      gas utilities.
platforms, most or all of which are addressed in some way
                                                                      www.tantalus.com
by innovative companies in the Greater Vancouver Wireless
Sector.                                                               Unity Wireless – Develops key network components for
                                                                      wireless carriers and OEM sub-components for network
Although there are a limited number of companies locally
                                                                      infrastructure manufacturers. www.unitywireless.com
in the network space, they develop services, devices and
applications for virtually all of the commonly used wireless          WIRELESS APPLICATIONS
network platforms – such as GSM, PCS and D-AMPS – to
                                                                      Applications developers make up by far the largest sub-
enable a wide variety of networks, ranging from LANs, MANs
                                                                      sector in Vancouver’s wireless community. With subscriber
and WANs, to PANs (Personal Area Networks), VANs (Vehicle
                                                                      growth rates slowing for cellular service providers, they
Area Networks) and more. The network services they provide
                                                                      are increasingly looking for innovative and compelling
include sensing and security, audio and video streaming, WiFi,
                                                                      applications to strengthen their relationships with existing
BlueTooth, secure data transmission, telephony, and more.
                                                                      subscribers.
Vancouver is a pioneer of wireless Internet technology. MPR
                                                                      New wireless applications produced by Vancouver companies
Teltech developed the technologies for the world’s first 2G
                                                                      have a reputation for uniqueness and world-class quality,
network, CDPD. This networks technology was deployed
                                                                      which stems from this sector’s long association with
by all US carriers between 1995 and 2000 as the wireless
                                                                      innovative telecommunications companies such as BCTel/
IP network offering. Invented in Greater Vancouver, TELUS
                                                                      Telus, MPR, MacDonald Dettwiler and MDI. Applications
rolled out CDPD in 1995 in the Lower Mainland and was one
                                                                      developers in Vancouver regularly draw favorable attention
of the first three carriers in the world to provide wireless
                                                                      from venture capital firms north and south of the Canada/US
Internet service.
                                                                      border, including from members of the prestigious Service
Notable.Companies                                                     Providers Investment Forum – a Silicon Valley group which
TELUS Mobility – This wireless business unit of TELUS                 represents the investment arms of some of the world’s
Corporation, is a Canadian wireless telecommunications                largest telecoms.
provider offering wireless voice, data and Internet services          Notable.companies
to business and consumer clients via two state-of-the-art
                                                                      AirG – Develops and implements applications for mobile
digital wireless networks. It is the only company with two such
                                                                      communities and wireless social networking. airG ’s mobile
networks, providing digital wireless coverage for more than
                                                                      community has more than 40 million unique users worldwide
93% of the Canadian population.
                                                                  6
                                                                                                  INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




and is interconnected to more than 100 mobile operators
and media companies globally including Sprint Nextel, AT&T,
Rogers, TELUS, Virgin Mobile, Orange, Boost Mobile, Vodafone
and MTV Asia.
www.airg.com
AppLocation – Provides innovative wireless and location-
based services (LBS) – including web, fleet management
and emergency response solutions – to enterprise clients
throughout North America. They develop reliable, scalable
applications that capture real time data from remote and
dispersed sources, transforming that data so it can be used to
make timely and informed business decisions.
www.applocation.net




                                                                                                                                         PHOTO: FOTOLIA
Colligo Networks, Inc. – Provides peer-to-peer wireless
productivity software designed for notebooks, Tablet PCs
and handhelds. Colligo leverages the WLAN and Bluetooth
capabilities of mobile devices, allowing users to securely
exchange information, share resources and communicate                 Empower Technologies - Provider of hardware and software
without the need for central access points, servers or Internet       solutions for a wide variety of embedded devices for
connections. Markets include businesses and OEM customers             manufacturers and marketers. Empower has developed a
in North America, Europe and Asia.                                    Linux-based Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) application
http://www.colligo.com                                                which enables wireless internet connection through a cellular
                                                                      phone.
EQO – Targets the always-connected, mobile youth market,
                                                                      www.empowertechnologies.com
keeping them connected to online friends even when they’re
away from their PCs. EQO’s combine wireless applications              Exponentia – Develops wireless enabled on-line games and
with Voice-Over-IP call signaling, Presence & Instant                 applications that drive revenue for digital rights owners,
Messaging, Peer-to-Peer networking, and switched telephony.           provides engaging entertainment for their audiences. Users
www.eqo.com                                                           can take part in polls in conjunction with live TV or radio
                                                                      broadcasts, play games based on predicting the next score
LiveCast – Recently collaborated with Palm, Inc. to present
                                                                      during a live game, or enjoy trivia quizzes and skill
live streaming video from a celebrity Oscar-viewing party and
fund raising event. LiveCast enables live video streaming             www.exponentia.com
directly from a cell phone, mobile internet device, PC or             HyperWallet – Enables online banking and provides
Mac to anyone connected to the Web. When coupled with                 reconciliation services, including secure payments and funds
GPS, LiveCast also adds detailed location data within each            transferring using mobile devices.
frame of the video stream, enabling dynamic mapping of the            www.hyperwallet.com
video. LiveCast has pioneered live streaming from WiMAX
phones and was recently named “Best in Class” in the Sierra           Iamota – A Mobile Application Service Provider (MASP)
Wireless/wavefront developer program.                                 that operates a proprietary end-to-end mobile marketing,
www.livecast.com                                                      messaging & payment platform across North America.
                                                                      Iamota connects online merchants, brands, large enterprises,
3rdWhale.com – A digital media company focused on                     marketers, ad agencies, bloggers & members of social
providing tools, resources and innovative projects to help            networks with mobile phone users, while mobile content
people live greener and healthier lifestyles.                         creation and delivery.
www.3rdwhale.com                                                      www.iamota.com
Brand2hand Media – Enables brand-owners to let consumers              Intrinsyc – Provides software solutions that enable next-
to use their media players, laptops and mobile phones as              generation handheld products, including mobile handsets,
personal fitness trainers, putting fitness expertise books,           smart phones and embedded devices. Based in Vancouver,
magazines, websites, and TV into the hands users in health            with offices in China, Israel, Taiwan and the US, Intrinsyc is a
clubs, home gyms, and outdoors.                                       Microsoft Windows Embedded Gold Partner and a winner of
www.brand2handmedia.com/                                              Windows Embedded Excellence Awards in 2007 and 2008.
Dynegent – Developer of Unicom, a scalable Billing,                   KeyZap – Uses smart chip technology to ensure ease of use
Customer, and Revenue Management (BCRM) system with                   and enhanced security in mobile financial transactions. The
automated real-time integration to any traditional and next-          company says its proprietary Neo Omega 6 server platform
generation network elements                                           and Java/Brew based handset architecture has never been
www.dynegent.com                                                      compromised, enabling users to bank, manage finances, buy

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                                                                                                   INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




products and services, collect loyalty points and incentives –         Techneos Systems – Provides powerful and flexible mobile
even turn on lights remotely – from a single wireless handheld         survey software to customers of all sizes in 50 countries,
device. www.keyzap.com                                                 on devices ranging from mobile phones and PDAs to Ultra-
                                                                       Mobile PCs, tablet PCs and laptop computers.
LiteFeeds – Provides a custom mobile Web browser for any
                                                                       www.techneos.com
Java Phone/SmartPhone, Blackberry, Palm or PocketPC,
using RSS as a content delivery system to enable one-click             Upside Wireless Inc. – Provides a networking platform
web navigation and fast content downloads.                             requiring no software downloads to integrate mobile
www.litefeeds.com                                                      communications and text messaging for strategic activities
                                                                       such as marketing and advertising, communicating with sales
Linxoft – Specializes in telecommunications, CRM, and
                                                                       people in the field, or increasing customer service levels.
business mapping solutions that help the industry to build
                                                                       www.upsidewireless.com
and roll out mobile and wireless networks more efficiently.
Their NetQ™, is a network rollout management solution                  Verrus Mobile Technologies – Develops and deploys advanced
that helps infrastructure suppliers, network operators, and            mobile payment and entertainment solutions. Verrus Next
program management partners to manage turnkey projects                 Generation Parking Systems enable consumers to pay for
more efficiently. Linxoft incoporates state-of-the-art GIS             parking using any mobile phone or PDA. Verrus Sports
technology, Pivotal CRM, SAP, Microsoft .NET platforms, and            Services offers real-time, interactive games and in-seat
Internet products.                                                     ordering by phone.
www.linxoft-solutions.com/                                             www.verrus.com
Lypp – A calling service that uses Instant Messaging to initiate       WebTech Wireless – Has developed and manufactured
one-on-one and group calls from mobile devices. Users sign             a Vehicle Location System that integrates GPS, wireless
in to Google Talk, Yahoo! Messenger, MSN or AIM on their               technologies and the Internet to deliver wireless vehicle
mobile device and send commands to a Lypp ‘buddy’ to create            tracking and location services. Webtech has recently
phone calls. Lypp’s private network then initiates a callback to       completed a pilot phase with Grupo Nacional Provincial S.A.B.
the Lypp user and the other party or parties.                          (GNP) to provide location-based services to GNP’s 1.3 million+
www.lypp.com                                                           Mexican automotive policy holders.
                                                                       www.webtechwireless.com
Mobidia, Inc. – Provides a software platform for mobile
network operators that enhance their data networks by                  Whitenoise Labs – Provides on-the-fly encryption for ultra-
leveraging the power of millions of smartphones and                    secure transmission of voice and data. Whitenoise can be
connected laptops. Their .wave™ (dot wave) solution adds               deployed either in software or on silicon.
capacity to existing network infrastructure, accelerates
                                                                       www.whitenoiselabs.com
subscribers’ experiences, provides unique insights into
subscriber’s data usage and enhancesmobile data traffic                COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES – VANCOUVER WIRELESS SECTOR
management.
                                                                       An easy climate, a beautiful setting, an array of social services
www.mobidia.com
                                                                       and a civil society all make Vancouver attractive to outsiders.
Panoramic Software Inc. – Designs, develops, publishes, and            Companies here enjoy access to a skilled and well-educated
distributes mobile games, and applications for smartphone              pool of local talent, plus competitive advantages over the USA
devices. The company has recently release Panoramic Phone              in overseas recruitment. Companies here also enjoy relatively
Genius which can displays the location of the number calling,          low corporate tax rates. But besides those advantages,
easily manage Windows Mobile contacts, search for any North            Vancouver also enjoys a tradition of technological excellence
American area code or world country code and display its               which has given rise to a network of governmental and non-
location and simple facts about the region, set custom calling         governmental support agencies and organizations.
rules, and more.
www.panoramicsoft.com                                                  WIRELESS ASSOCIATIONS AND ORGANIZATIONS
Streamonix – Has developed a next-generation video delivery            With all the different wireless products and services being
system designed to transmit Digital Cinema, High Definition            produced by the Vancouver wireless cluster, it is often difficult
and DVD-quality video streams to thousands of Fibre-to-the-            for suppliers, customers and governments to find the right
Home, xDSL and 3G/4G wireless subscribers. Customers                   wireless solutions, and for wireless companies to find the
include large Japanese wireless and wired communications               right target markets, or undertake the often confusing and
companies.                                                             arduous process of selling to governments, major carriers
www.streamonix.com                                                     and other large companies.
Tagga Media Inc. – Enables anyone to create instant                    Fortunately, a number of non-profit wireless and technology
SMS and Mobile Sites to interact with, sell to, or simply              associations exist in Vancouver to help both wireless
communicate with mobile users. Also offers tools to enhance            developers and their customers.
the distribution and monetization of mobile content through            WINBC – With over 150 members, WINBC represents the
comprehensive online/mobile campaigns.                                 interests of the local wireless cluster with a variety of services
www.tagga.com
                                                                   8
                                                                                                INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




and initiatives. It has resources to help members navigate the
public sector maze, and to help the Government source local
wireless technology solutions.
WINBC provides project management and business
development support and has the resources to connect
wireless companies through a variety of events such as
regular MoMoVan networking meetings and Face_Time
sessions with leading wireless carriers and other large
companies.
WINBC also hosts the annual Pacific Northwest Wireless
Summit, has co-hosted a technology export showcase in
Beijing, and has be instrumental in staging several Service




                                                                                                                                       PHOTO: FOTOLIA
Provider Investment Forums in Vancouver (these forums
rarely happen outside Silicon Valley).
Their website and member directory are an important way
for vendors, suppliers and investors to meet one another. The
association has also taken pains to develop good working             business-oriented advisory services to small- and medium-
relationships with all levels of government.                         sized Canadian companies. It may also provide financial
www.winbc.org                                                        support for growth-oriented enterprises engaged in innovative
                                                                     research and development, which helps them become
BCTIA – The British Columbia Technology Industry Association
                                                                     commercialization-ready.
is the largest technology association in BC. Its members
come from all technology sectors and enjoy a wide variety            Each year, NRC/IRAP helps more than 12,000 SMEs turn good
of benefits, including: Networking events, industry reports          ideas into profitable businesses. NRC, itself, is a recognized
and knowledge exchange, advocacy on behalf of technology             worldwide as a leader in developing Canada’s knowledge-
industries with government, plus a variety of education,             based economy.
employment and other programs to help technology                     http://irap-pari.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/
companies and individuals employed in the industry.                  Industry Canada – Provides a variety of services, tools and
www.bctia.org                                                        information related to the ICT sector, which includes wireless.
wavefront™ -- wavefront describes itself as “the                     Their services extend into such areas as commercialization,
commercialization centre accelerating the growth of British          manufacturing, value chains, advanced telecommunications
Columbia’s growing cluster of more than 1,000 wireless and           research, innovation, and more.
new media developer companies.”                                      www.ic.gc.ca/
Companies can improve their speed to market and delivery of          EDC – Export Development Canada is Canada’s export credit
mobile applications and devices by using wavefront’s suite of        agency. It helps Canadian companies become successful
training, testing, accreditation and advisory services.              exporters by offering innovative financing, insurance and risk
                                                                     management solutions. Over 6,000 Canadian companies use
The organization maintains a reference library of wireless
                                                                     EDC’s knowledge and partnerships to reach global customers
handsets and devices for testing. It is also enjoying an
                                                                     in some 200 markets. Roughly 90 per cent of EDC’s
increasing profile with international application providers:
                                                                     customers are small and medium-sized businesses.
recently wavefront joined in a partnership agreement with
                                                                     www.edc.ca/
Mobile Distillery, Europe’s leading provider of software
solutions for mobile application production and testing              Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) – WD provides
services.                                                            indirect funding, trade promotion, business tools and guides,
                                                                     economic research and market studies in the interests of
Wavefront also is also a partner in the Sierra Wireless and
                                                                     encouraging and supporting a strong business and economic
wavefront Developer Program, which seeks out “best-in-class
                                                                     base in Western Canada. It carries out its mandate through
enterprise or consumer applications that take advantage of
                                                                     programs in:
the mobile broadband and GPS capabilities built into Sierra
Wireless PC cards, ExpressCards and USB modems.”                       ›› Collaboration›and›Coordination – Organizing and
                                                                          coordinating meetings, conferences or other events with
GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS                                                  other levels of government, other federal departments,
                                                                          industry, academia, or the not-for-profit sector
Canada’s strength in technology training and research,
coupled with a generous R&D tax credit system, makes this a            ›› Research›and›Analysis›–›Preparing and disseminating
                                                                          information that results in an increased understanding of
good country for wireless R&D.
                                                                          western Canadian challenges, opportunities and priorities,
NRC/IRAP – The NRC Industrial Research Assistance                         and which provides the factual intelligence necessary
Program (NRC-IRAP) provides a range of technical and                      to undertake internal or external policy and program
                                                                          development
                                                                 9
                                                                                                     INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




  ›› Advocacy›–›Organizing and attending meetings, writing               emphasizing propagation, channel modeling and low-profile
     correspondence, or taking part in any other communication           antennas. The lab researches problems on behalf of Canadian
     or engagement activities that promote the interests of              industry, government and academia. It also trains highly
     western Canada and western Canadians                                qualified personnel in wireless communications systems
  ›› Community›Economic›Planning,›Development›and›                       design, thus meeting the staffing needs of Canadian industry,
     Adjustment›–›Projects›that help communities assess                  government, and academia.
     community strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and
     potential for new economic activity, and to implement               The Radio Science Lab’s other activities include:
     community plans.                                                      ›› Measurement-based and analytical modeling of the
  ›› Infrastructure›–›Delivers›the Infrastructure Canada                      radiowave propagation environment for satellite, wide area,
     Program (ICP) in western Canada                                          wireless LAN, and personal area network applications.

  ›› Business›Development›and›Entrepreneurship – a variety                 ›› Assessing the radiowave propagation environment for the
     of service delivery mechanisms and partnerships aimed at                 design of antennas and wireless communication systems.
     finding new and alternative sources of capital for small and          ›› Developing methods to assess and optimize the
     medium-sized businesses by working closely with financial                performance of wireless communications networks.
     institutions to create specialized loan programs                      ›› Developing computer-aided instrumentation, and data
  ›› Innovation›–›WD’s›innovation focus is on economic                        mining and scientific visualization techniques.
     development and diversification leading to wealth creation.
                                                                         MAGIC Lab at UBC – The Media and Graphics Interdisciplinary
     It recognizes that innovation occurs at the firm level,
     through a highly complex system that includes knowledge
                                                                         Centre (MAGIC) fosters research covering the entire spectrum
     infrastructure, basic and applied research and development,         of new computer-based and computer-associated media.
     highly skilled people, access to adequate financing,                Some examples include multimedia, mobile computing,
     technology commercialization facilities, and support                computer animation, 3-D modeling, interactive Web-based
     systems                                                             applications, hypermedia, computer music and computer-
     www.wd.gc.ca/eng/home.asp                                           based tools for collaboration in education, medicine and
                                                                         entertainment.
BC Innovation Council (BCIC) – is British Columbia’s
lead organization charged with advancing innovation and                  Projects affiliated with MAGIC have their own funding,
commercialization, BCIC’s main focus is to help competitively            although MAGIC provides shared facilities and personnel to
position British Columbia in the global science and technology           help the start-up phases of projects and in designing and
community in order to create wealth in the economy. To do                evaluating research prototypes.
that, it provides tools, training and other services related to          UBC’s University-Industry Liaison Office (UILO) – facilitates
talent development, innovation and commercialization.                    the exchange of knowledge between The University of British
www.bcic.ca/                                                             Columbia, its Affiliated Hospitals, industry, and the wider
BC Ministry of Small Business, Technology & Economic                     community. UILO assists UBC researchers to increase
Development – has provincial responsibility for research and             the academic, societal and environmental, as well as the
innovation and a mandate to help build a strong provincial               economic and financial impacts of their work.
economy and support job creation. Within the ministry, the               www.uilo.ubc.ca/
research and innovation branch furthers British Columbia’s               SFU Telematics research lab – The lab focuses on testing
presence in the global economy by collaborating with                     contemporary and emerging telematics technologies
universities, technology companies and organizations, other              (including new media) to evaluate and improve their use
ministries, other provinces and the federal government.                  in disaster management activities. This work incorporates
The ministry is home to                                                  advanced telecommunications (especially space-based and
  ›› The British Columbia Knowledge Development Fund, which              terrestrial wireless technologies), development of applications
     provides funding for research infrastructure at post-               over networks and facilitating technology transfer to the
     secondary institutions.                                             disaster management community through partnerships and
                                                                         collaborative networking initiatives.
  ›› The British Columbia Innovation Council
                                                                         Collaborators include the SFU PolyLAB, Industry Canada -
http://www.gov.bc.ca/tted/
                                                                         Emergency Telecommunications, Emergency Preparedness
UNIVERSITIES – KNOWLEDGE AND TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER                         Canada, Communications Research Centre, TMI
                                                                         Communications (MSAT), Telesat Canada, and Wi_LAN Inc.
There are three major educational institutions in the Greater
                                                                         One specific area of concern is the vulnerability of terrestrial
Vancouver area, which engage with the wireless industry to
                                                                         infrastructure to large and catastrophic earthquakes
facilitate the exchange of knowledge and technology: The
                                                                         (especially on the West Coast of Canada).
University of BC (UBC), Simon Fraser University (SFU), and
the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT).                     RF/Microwave Mobile Communication Laboratory (MCL) – The
                                                                         MCL operates at the physical and data link levels of mobile
Radio Science Lab at UBC – contributes to the theory
                                                                         and personal communications. Research collaboration has
and practice of wireless communications system design,
                                                                    10
                                                                           INDUSTRY PROFILE » GREEN TECH




resulted in a convergence of digital signal processing (DSP)
and radio frequency (RF) design methods, along with a
generous mixture of modulation, detection and coding theory.
Among MCL’s successes are:
  ›› one of the world’s first adaptive digital predistorters
  ›› the world’s first adaptive baseband analog predistorter
  ›› the world’s first jointly adaptive predistorter and quadrature
     modulator
  ›› the world’s widest bandwidth feedforward linearizer
  ›› adaptive antenna arrays for cellular and PCS applications
SFU is ranked number one for the number of start-up
companies per research dollar and ranked number two for




                                                                                                           PHOTO: FOTOLIA
the ratio of US patents per research dollar within Canada in
2002.
http://www.sfu.ca/uilo/
BCIT – has a program for Advanced Information Technology
and has recently opened a Technology Commercialization
Office (TCO). The TCO helps BCIT researchers and industry-
based clients focus projects on the needs of the market
place. BCIT’s research is aimed at technology application and
problem solving to create commercial success. http://www.
bcit.ca/appliedresearch/arlo/

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
VEDC thanks all those who helped by providing information
for this review. Some of those we thank are: Michael Bidu,
Executive Director WINBC; James Maynard, president of
wavefront; Brad Lowe, Director of R&D at Nokia Canada;
Willie Wong, Technical Director, Sierra Wireless; Mourad
Chergui, SFU MBA candidate. We also thank all the other
organizations, government departments and companies
whose information contributed to this profile of Vancouver’s
wireless sector.
SPECIAL NOTE: If we missed your company, please let us
know so we can include it next time.




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