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					            The Wireless Industry

           An Emerging Technology



                      By



             Bjarne Berg-Saether

   University of North Carolina - Charlotte




 In partial fulfillment of the requirements for

INFO-8200 SYSTEM ANALYSIS AND DESIGN




                                                  1
                                                           Table of Content




BACKGROUND ............................................................................................................................ 3

PRESENT SITUATION ................................................................................................................. 5
   A. INDUSTRY ADAPTATION .......................................................................................................... 6
   B. THE SALES PROCESS ................................................................................................................ 8
   C. VENDORS ................................................................................................................................. 9
NEW DEVELOPMENTS ............................................................................................................. 10

THE RETURN ON WIRELESS INVESTMENTS ...................................................................... 10

COST OF WIRELESS ADOPTION ............................................................................................ 11

THE UNIQUE COMPUTING REQUIREMENTS OF THE MOBILE USER ........................... 12

THE MATURITY OF WIRELESS TECHNOLOGY .................................................................. 13

DATA POTOCOLS ...................................................................................................................... 14
  A. PACKET-SWITCHED CELLULAR: CDPD ................................................................................. 15
  B. CDMA VS. TDMA ................................................................................................................ 16
  C. 802.11b and 802.11g………………………………………………………………………..16
  D. GSM 3rd GENERATION…………………………………………………………………...17
THE RELATIVE SIZE AND DIGITAL DIRECTION OF THE MAJOR U.S. CELLULAR
CARRIERS ................................................................................................................................... 17
   A. SERVICE PRICING ................................................................................................................... 17
   B. CONTRACT LENGTH ............................................................................................................... 18
CONCLUSIONS........................................................................................................................... 19

WORKS CITED ........................................................................................................................... 21




                                                                                                                                    2
Background

        Wireless communications and computing projects are driven by myriad forces, from chief

executive mandates to shoestring initiatives sponsored by an individual sales branch manager.

Regardless of whether the project is just another duty for an end-user computing group or is a

major corporate undertaking headed by a task force with full representation from all groups

concerned, the wireless project presents information systems (IS) managers with both an

opportunity (for visibility) and a challenge (to bring order to a very fragmented set of

technologies). IS managers must encourage their companies to evaluate both strategic and

tactical issues to avoid unnecessary missteps in the shifting territory of wireless communications

and computing technology.

        IS managers should first bring a strategic perspective to the project by offering insight

into potential wireless technologies and vendors. The tactical aspects of the wireless project can

then be presented to the wireless project team, discussed and decided upon. The two key

strategic tasks are to completely define applications in the context of business requirements and

to select from competing vendor alliances where necessary. Defining an enterprise's

requirements completely is extremely important in wireless communications and mobile

computing because even modest changes in the applications' functions can dramatically change

the resulting tactical choices.

        The tactical mobile data issues include terminal and peripheral selection, operating

system selection, radio frequency (RF) technology selection (e.g., cellular, paging, public packet

radio, Enhanced Specialized Mobile Radio (ESMR), mobile satellite systems and hybrid

technologies), land-line connectivity options, logical connectivity options (e.g., 802.11a,b or g),



                                                                                            3
Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)) and business issues such as defining

an audit trail and estimating a project's life-cycle costs and returns.

       Mobile data applications are generally categorized as either vertical or horizontal.

Vertical applications are industry- or company-specific and are typically the drivers of both the

initial mandate and the eventual return on investment for the project. These applications are often

sourced from industry software specialists or custom designed. Vertical applications include

inventory tracking, request-for-proposal (RFP) development, order entry and tracking, and field

dispatch. Horizontal applications such as electronic mail (E-mail), facsimile, position location,

paging access and information services can change the complexion of a project's

communications requirements, but they generally do not justify the project themselves.

       This paper focuses on the wireless communications portion of the larger mobile

computing trend. It addresses the highly fragmented nature of the base wireless data industries -

cellular data, paging, public packet radio, ESMR, mobile satellite services and emerging hybrids

- which is often the most arcane part of mobile computing projects for computer industry

professionals. Analysts believe that the number of users for each wireless data technology may

grow dramatically and overlap as the technologies' transmission characteristics and geographical

reaches blur (Gartner Group, 2003). As a result, wireless vendors seeking to address the business

and consumer markets need to hedge their bets on wireless technology winners.

       Because of the dynamic nature of the wireless technology market, IS managers and the

wireless project team should carefully examine the strength of vendor alliances seeking to

provide turnkey solutions. Such issues as the formal duration of an alliance, marketing rights (by

industry or geography), intellectual property rights, funding and staffing of joint ventures, bailout

clauses and future product development commitments should all be investigated.

                                                                                            4
Present Situation

       Most of today's limited demand for two-way wireless data services stems from field

service and short- and long-haul transportation organizations, which have derived measurable

benefits from the technology. ARDIS, QUALCOMM and RAM Mobile Data have heavy

concentrations of users in the transportation industry and among field service and delivery

organizations. Sales people and other field professionals have been slower to embrace wireless

communications and computing technology; many have been put off by the technology's bulky

and expensive radio modems, inadequate coverage (especially inside buildings and

internationally), high or unpredictable usage costs, and complex deployment solutions. The lack

of client/server applications optimized for wireless communications has also slowed the

technology's acceptance by mobile office workers. The market for fixed-location applications,

such as remote monitoring (telemetry) and point-of-sale transactions, remains limited as well

(Gartner Group, 2002).

       During the next five years, wireless services may appeal to a broader constituency; in

fact, field professionals and mobile office workers may come to represent the bulk of users

(Gartner Group, 2003). Already, the client/server architecture is being modified to include

necessary functions and features to support these mobile workers. In addition, sales force

automation vendors, developers of horizontal messaging and database applications, and other

vendors are optimizing their products for the mobile professional. Independent analysts believe

that by 2006, the economics of fixed-location applications may attract more users as Cellular

Digital Packet Data (CDPD) carriers, 220-MHz ESMR providers, Metricom and others seek

ways to attract "off peak" usage on their networks (MetaGroup, 2002).



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       Wireless data service providers may also woo the mass consumer market as they try to

recoup their tremendous capital investments in network infrastructure and operations.

Nonetheless, demand among the general populace for two-way wireless data services may

remain limited (fewer than two million users) through 2004 (Gartner Group, 2003). Wireless

data services may evolve slowly from vertical business applications to horizontal business

applications and ultimately to mass-market applications that appeal to consumers in 2006 and

beyond. This evolution is both necessary and inevitable; there are no shortcuts that may take

device manufacturers and wireless service providers straight out of the research-and-

development lab and into the consumer mass market with wireless computing products and

services.

       A. Industry Adaptation

       For companies trying to determine who should use wireless services (and when), the

following guidelines apply. Type B (mainstream adopters of technology) field service and

delivery organizations should evaluate two-way wireless data services now, as Type As

(aggressive adopters of technology) are quickly establishing the technology as a competitive

necessity in a number of industries. For the next 18 months, Type A field professional

organizations have an opportunity to leverage two-way wireless data services in their business

processes to gain a competitive advantage - temporary as it may be. Type Bs should plan to arm

field professionals with wireless computing capabilities beginning in 2006. Fixed-location, low-

bandwidth wireless applications such as telemetry and point-of-sale transactions may be widely

available and economical within three years for adoption by both Type A and B enterprises.

Banks, hotels, retail stores and other consumer-oriented enterprises should not expect a critical



                                                                                           6
mass (ten million users) of consumers to use wireless computing before 2006, but should include

the possibility in their long-term planning.

       Historically, 1993 was the year of standards progress in mobile communications and

wireless computing. 1994 was the year that usable products and services emerged in many

segments, including digital cellular, analog cellular data (both packet and circuit-switched) and

ESMR. 1995 marked the final year of market preparation for mobile computing. Most companies

spent the year planning wireless strategies, conducting trials and evaluating wireless and mobile

computing options. Companies want unlimited access for their mobile workers, but the

intricacies of implementing multi-vendor systems, combined with the uncertainties about

wireless network options and recurring communications costs, are making them cautious. The

good news for vendors (and frustrated end users) is that acceptance of wireless data services may

begin to accelerate in 2004 and become commonplace within the five-year planning horizon.

       Wireless wide-area network (WAN) mobile data applications have not been the boom

market many had thought they would be. Two-way, wireless data communications services have

been available in most metropolitan areas for several years. Despite the availability, few

enterprises have even tried such services, much less incorporated them into strategic

applications. Total U.S. wireless data subscribers still number fewer than 16,250,000; worldwide

demand is no more than twice that number (Gartner Group, 2003).

       User apathy may stems equally from ignorance of the services' capabilities and benefits

and a good understanding of the services' limitations, which include bulky modems and limited

service areas. In addition, wireless data have not been a top priority for information technology

(IT) expenditures. In the next five years, however, wireless data communications may become a

strategic competitive weapon for many enterprises. During the next five years, the demand may

                                                                                             7
shift. Already, client/server architectures are being modified to include the necessary functions

and features to support these mobile workers.

       B. The Sales Process

       Although carriers are not born retailers, streamlining and better managing their retail

sales channels is pivotal to their potential success. There is more than one way to sell wireless

service. At least, that is how carriers, especially the PCS start-ups, should think in a highly

competitive environment. Getting started in the wireless business with one small store or a

handful of tele-marketers is no longer acceptable. Rather, carriers need to assemble direct and

indirect sales strategies that plug into the potential market on many levels. Opening proprietary

stores and staffing a customer care center with trained telemarketers are two elements of the

strategy. But distribution through independent retailers, Radio Shack, Circuit City, Best Buy and

Kmart, to name a few, presents carriers with another proven sales channel, and probably a

necessary one for selling to the mainstream audience. Sales has also dramatically increased

through the use of these sales channels (Hardy & Naik, 2002). The good news for the PCS

industry is that many PCS carriers are building operational support systems from scratch and can

design them for better efficiency. Most likely, a consumer would spend some time looking at

different phones at the carrier's store, mull over a very short list of different service packages,

and review a lengthy service contract that typically had a one- or even two-year commitment.

However, many early PCS carriers made good first impressions with customers by doing away

with long-term contracts. The flexibility of digital networks and software directories have

allowed retailers to break the constraints of designed service packages to create packages based

on specific needs. Also, having direct access to key databases through retail management

systems allows retailers to put customers on-line almost immediately. The entire process of

                                                                                              8
purchasing and setting up wireless service can conceivably take well under an hour. Therefore,

making money at the wireless game takes more than mastering retail opportunities (Turiello,

2003).

         C. Vendors
         Sales in Nokia's twin engines--the mobile phones and base stations that make up the bulk

of its revenues--more than quadrupled, from $2.1 billion in 1993 to $12.7 billion last year. And

the good news keeps pouring in, with operating earnings for the recent June quarter surging to

$616 million, up 76% from the same quarter in 2003. These days, the $12.7 billion Nokia has

one of the hottest cell phones on the market, the 9800 series, whose battery and unique circuitry

support a whole week of standby time. It's the first super small phone with that kind of battery

life. Nokia is also the first company to develop a mobile phone that surfs the Web. However

companies such as Lucent and Sun has also announced deals to provide similar web services

(Wall Street Journal, 2003). All told, Nokia is providing troubled Motorola Inc., the leader in

old- fashioned analog phones, with a humiliating tutorial on digital communications. Very early

in 1998, Motorola CEO Christopher B. Galvin conceded that ``the analog business is trending

down” (Crockett, 1998). To keep the Nokia's sales and earnings growing at 25% to 30%, the

company must push to churn out new models of phones at a dizzying rate. Nokia’s 9800 phones

are so popular that AT&T, Nokia's most important U.S. customer, can't satisfy all of its

subscribers. Nokia must also contend with heavy hitters such as Alcatel Alsthom and Northern

Telecom Ltd., which compete against Nokia in cellular base stations, or so-called infrastructure

(Business Week, 2003). Other fast growing vendors, such as the Palmpilot, are also emerging

with hand held technology that can be used in the wireless domain .




                                                                                           9
New Developments

   In many industries, the need to collect, access and manipulate real-time information to

improve customer service and enable new services may establish wireless data communications

as a competitive imperative. Enterprises that may find mobile and wireless applications to be a

competitive imperative by 2006 have some common traits:

      They have a critical mass of mobile workers with jobs that directly impact the bottom

       line. Those workers include field service, logistics and distribution workers; field

       professionals; and mobile office employees.

      They have a rapidly shrinking time-to-information requirement. Although this

       requirement is obvious in certain industries such as financial services, astute competitors

       in other industries (perhaps pharmaceutical sales or real estate) may use wireless

       technology to create the requirement. This has already occurred in the courier industry,

       where wireless data services have become a prerequisite for effective competition.

   It is expected that Type A companies to use wireless applications to create competitive

discontinuities. Type B companies may respond to the industry pressure created by Type As.


The Return on Wireless Investments

       On average, companies using two-way wireless data services have seen a productivity

increase of 20 percent (Gartner Group, 2002). For field workers, for instance, increased

productivity comes from being able to make more calls per day and close out each call more

quickly. For example, the Bank of America uses the technology for its automated teller machine

(ATM) repair people, increasing the number of machines that a worker can service in a day and

decreasing ATM downtime. Certain applications, such as collaborative messaging or software

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distribution, are common to most mobile workers. To get a better return on investment, it helps

to recognize common characteristics across mobile applications. The software that is written to

support the field service organization, for instance, may be reused when automating the traveling

executive. At a more detailed level, however, mobile applications vary widely depending on the

type of user and on the vertical industry.


Cost of Wireless Adoption

       When selecting a wireless application or set of applications, a company must decide how

much customization is necessary for base packages and what the return on a customization

investment may be over time. Not coincidentally, cellular carriers have become more

application-sensitive and have begun building partnerships with application developers, systems

integrators and mobile data gateway providers. These integrators have also been subject for

massive consolidations, mergers and acquisitions. The first among these historical major wireless

deals were Britain's Vodafone when it acquired AirTouch to create an integrated supplier of

services and products (Rendleman, 1999). This acquisition is widely regarded as the telecom

“madness” that ensued throughout the next 4 years and which left the industry is a debt that is

often described as “unmanageable”. The core issue is that the cost and complexity of wireless

data applications increases by an order of magnitude as geographic coverage requirements

expand. For projects involving a single carrier and access within metropolitan areas, enterprises

should expect to pay a 50 percent premium to fix up a mobile application with wireless access. If

coverage is required on a wide-area or nationwide basis, the cost premium expands to 150

percent (Gartner Group, 2003).

       Although use of two-way wireless data services remains limited in terms of bandwidth,

pioneering enterprises have learned valuable lessons that the less initiated may incorporate into
                                                                                         11
their own wireless data strategies. Early adopters have learned to calibrate their expectations,

obtain user support, stick to their core competencies and negotiate everything.


The Unique Computing Requirements of the Mobile User

       By combining client/server approaches and leveraging emerging types of distributed

function middleware, developers can provide solutions with sufficient value and functionality to

serve the growing market of mobile users. Choosing among available communications methods

represents a critical decision for IS and business managers. Enterprises often try to replicate the

desktop paradigm by using online connections such as remote control, remote node or even

terminal emulation. For most new applications, however, deferred connections based on

intelligent messaging may be better suited to the needs of the mobile work force.

       Communications products based on deferred, store-and-forward message delivery must

provide certain functionality to satisfy the requirements of applications developers and mobile

workers. Some of this functionality may be delivered as a component of an integrated application

solution, as has traditionally been the case in sales force automation. Going forward, some

mobile client/server vendors may deliver this functionality as part of integrated communications

solutions that are separate from specific applications. Other vendors may focus on a specific area

(say, optimization or synchronization) and provide best-of-breed functionality in that area. Users

must understand the contribution and benefits of each component in an application solution and

evaluate vendors by their ability to deliver the necessary functionality, keeping in mind that the

functionality may ultimately come from a combination of hardware providers, network services

providers, commercial application developers and mobile client/server vendors.

       For enterprises that wish to implement mobile client/server applications today, the most

complete deferred communications products come from the specialized vendor domain, which
                                                                                           12
includes XcelleNet and Technology Development Systems. Although users have been able to

construct "one off" solutions using E-mail products such as Lotus cc:Mail Remote or Microsoft

Mail Remote, such an approach have all fall short as application requirements expanded. As

specialized vendors continue to adapt to more open and standard technologies (for their container

architecture, server platform, development tools and so on) they may continue to attract the

interest of both user organizations and large database and messaging vendors that are seeking to

improve their own standing in this area. Database vendors have stepped up their efforts to

address mobile workers' needs as demonstrated by Oracle's release of Oracle Mobile Agents and

Sybase's acquisition of Complex Architectures.


The maturity of wireless Technology

       U.S. frequency allocations are a patchwork of bands and users that reflect the historical

maneuvers and clout of a variety of constituencies. U.S. cellular users communicate using two

pairs of frequency bands - a wire-line pair of bands and a nonwire-line pair of bands (transmit

and receive) in the spectrum from 824 MHz to 849 MHz and 869 MHz to 894 MHz. This 50

MHz of bandwidth is shared between two carriers in each geographic area. Although the cellular

industry is defined as services in these frequency bands, "cellular" technology based on

frequency reuse can be implemented in a variety of bands.

       The major U.S. cellular carriers are working on several technologies to help them

compete in the mobile computing market. The limiting factor to the cellular carriers' participation

is not their technology, however, but their billing and business systems and practices.

Corporations are demanding better management reporting, equal access to their primary inter-

exchange carriers' virtual offerings and, especially, volume discounts. analysts believe that the

early consolidation among the large carriers (AirTouch Communications-US West and Bell
                                                                                           13
Atlantic-NYNEX) was prompted in part by large users asking for broader services. Few

companies have the purchasing power of a United Parcel Service (i.e., 60,000 wireless-equipped

trucks) to enable truly individual pricing and terms, yet some volume pricing across carriers may

be required for carriers to market mobile computing services successfully to the Fortune 500.

Analysts expect the cellular carriers to continue to adjust to market demands and to dominate the

wireless data market over the next five years with circuit and packet services (Gartner Group,

2003).

         Many mobile workers are using the traditional analog voice network to send digital data

transmissions. These transmissions have been enabled by modems and special cellular protocols

that let digital data switch among connections on the old analog cellular voice channels. Recent

performance improvements in cellular modems include speed adaptation, quick handshaking,

quick retraining (less than a second during cell handoffs) and automatic level adjustment. As a

result of these advances, the latest generation of cellular modems now gives users a usable

wireless data connection. Within a year after launch , this modem technology was incorporated

directly into cellular handsets. Such companies as Microcom (with MNP10) and AT&T

continues to improve old cellular modem performance while reducing modem size and cost

(AT&T, 2002). The benefits of this hybrid technology based on yester-years analog systems, is

the leveraging of a fully-paid for infrastructure that is widely available. While, the risk is the lack

of early adaptation of true G3 systems with digital speed and bandwidth.


Data Protocols

         In a related advance, Primary Access is easing the data deployment task with its Aperture

modem bank, which automatically senses wireless modem types, demodulates, and connects to

standard land-line modem types in the cellular network. Pre-emphasis/de-emphasis schemes such
                                                                                             14
as Celeritas Technologies' TX-CEL and Motorola's MC2 are being incorporated into the cellular

networks to make them more compatible with data communications needs. Again, leveraging old

technology to compete with more costly new (and better) systems.

       A. Packet-Switched Cellular: CDPD

       CDPD runs across the cellular phone system. The technology was developed by IBM to

fill a desire to accommodate traffic that cannot tolerate the call set-up times of the cellular

network and that does not require a full-circuit-switched connection. CDPD divides a

transmission into small packets of data and sends the packets in bursts between voice

transmissions. The packets are recombined at the receiving end. If a packet is damaged or lost,

the system commands the sending unit to resend that particular packet. As a result, CDPD is

more reliable for sending data than circuit-switched technology, which often has transmission

problems when users move between cells or when there is radio interference.

Packet technology creates advantages in cost, security, resiliency against errors, and users' ability

to integrate mobile traffic into their networks. Because CDPD works over the unused portion of

the cellular phone network, cellular carriers can provide 19,200 bits per second (user throughput)

wireless packet networking without losing any voice traffic capacity. Not surprisingly, most

major cellular carriers are offering CDPD as a low cost alternative to GSM and better digital

protocols. The most significant issue for CDPD is its lack of nationwide or continent wide

coverage. With several carriers saying they do not forecast enough business in certain cities to

justify deployment, CDPD is threatened with the same kind of narrow-minded planning that

stymied Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) for years. The carriers need to understand

(and users need to assert) that wireless data are not a local phenomenon and that just because the

local business base may not justify deployment is not sufficient reason to forgo nationwide

                                                                                            15
deployment. Users with even a hint of need for packet cellular should make it known during their

contract negotiations for large cellular voice contracts that CDPD is a prerequisite for large voice

expenditures in coming years. Some carriers may try to appease users by offering circuit-

switched access to CDPD at reasonable rates, so that users can maintain a uniform host-side

architecture and be insulated from the RF network vagaries. Users can also insulate themselves

by choosing a gateway approach (Schweber & Granville). The shift in the CDPD standard from a

telephony-oriented to an IP-oriented standard has secured CDPD's place as the low-volume, low-

latency wireless choice. Most application vendors may gravitate to an IP-based implementation

and focus on proper tuning and applications efficiency. However, the true threat still remains the

GSM standard that is truly digital and which can move wireless data at a rate of upto 1Mb/sec.

This is even more apparent in the G3 systems being deployed in Europe. However, the major

barrier to adaptations in the earlier mentioned lack of funding in the industry due to the excesses

in the late 1990s and the 00s. This combined with the availability of low cost solutions such as

CDPC makes the national deployment of G3 networks, for, now, a highly unlikely event.

       B. CDMA vs. TDMA

       Digital wireless network standards are emerging that provide better network quality,

clearer voice transmissions, more capacity and greater throughput than the analog wireless

networks. Two standards, CDMA and TDMA, are battling to become the U.S. digital cellular

standard. Currently, the U.S. cellular industry is in a period in which TDMA service is available

and CDMA service is limited. This period, when TDMA is leading unchallenged skirmishes

against analog phone service, has been expected for several years because TDMA

standardization started earlier than CDMA. CDMA, however, came in operation in 2000 in parts

of the United States. In certain cities - particularly those that have an AT&T Wireless or Cellular

                                                                                          16
One presence (using TDMA) and a US West/AirTouch or Bell Atlantic/NYNEX Mobile

presence (using CDMA) - both digital cellular technologies may be competing in the same city.

Companies must realize, however, that when they choose CDMA or TDMA, they may be locked

into that particular technology because the digital portion of their dual-mode phone may not

operate on the competing network.


The Relative Size and Digital Direction of the Major U.S. Cellular Carriers

   As CDMA service becomes available, the battle between the two standards over service

quality, features and pricing may commence. With careful purchasing and negotiating,

companies can turn this skirmish to their advantage. Dual-mode TDMA analog phone prices

vary, but mobile and plain portables typically have list prices of $200, and "flip phones" are

about $195 or $800. These levels are three times that of analog-only phones, and analysts expect

the price premium to last for at least two years. In certain areas, sales promotion are dramatically

lowering the equipment prices. The first-generation TDMA phones do not (and may not) support

the Digital Control Channel. Some analysts advise companies that want TDMA to opt for

second-generation, IS136-compliant phones as a minimum. Enterprises that cannot wait for third

or higher generation phones and that plan to use any of the Digital Control Channel features

should negotiate to get free upgrades of their second-generation TDMA phones when the next-

generation of phones arrive.

   A. Service Pricing

   Most carriers are converting 5 percent to 10 percent of their analog phone system capacity to

digital cellular, but unless they fill these channels quickly, they may have effectively reduced

their installed-base capacity. As a result, carriers that have made the conversion to TDMA have a

                                                                                          17
motivation to fill the digital network. Common carrier incentives for clients to move to digital

cellular include free phones or a lower per-minute price for high-volume users. Corporate users

following these major account guidelines for cellular buying may be able to get both incentives

along with the phone upgrade noted above.

   B. Contract Length

   With TDMA service now available in about 35 major U.S. markets, some users have an

opportunity to get better quality service at reduced cost. The real advanced features came with

the third-generation release of TDMA, and the real competition came with CDMA service in

2001. This has been, and continues to be a highly evolving industry, where the backbone

industry standards are highly evolving. Enterprises should structure the length of wireless

contracts accordingly.

   Let us take a historical view of this phenomenon; In July 1994, the Telecommunications

Industry Association announced the adoption of the IS-95 digital CDMA cellular standard. This

move erased a main complaint from the TDMA camp (i.e., that TDMA was a standard and

CDMA was not). Analysts believed that IS-95 paved the way for long-term CDMA advocates

among the U.S. service providers to proceed with a CDMA upgrade and placed additional

pressure on the few holdouts and undecided carriers (Ernsberger, 1998). The bad news was that

two U.S. standards existed, with no means to resolve their differences. This is now compounded

with local wireless networks such as the 802.11b and the 802.11g networks, as well as the future

GSM-3 standards adapted by the rest of the world.

   For the typical U.S. corporate cellular end user, it does not matter which digital technology is

used because either is better than the current U.S. analog phone service. Limited testing on a

production system indicates that, for voice service, TDMA has much less background noise than

                                                                                         18
analog phone service but sounds hollow. The hollowness, which is caused by the vocoder rather

than the digital radio, may affect different users differently. In general, the improved privacy and

increased capacity and availability that users get with digital cellular may outweigh concerns

about sound quality. Nonetheless, because a single technology may not be available nationwide,

companies may find digital cellular for data communications less attractive than other wireless

options. As a result, analog phones in a dual-mode handset may be the predominant technology

for roaming cellular coverage throughout a five-year planning horizon. In the long run, the

Gartner Group expect the CDMA standard to win out in the U.S. cellular market (800 MHz

band), while the GSM will be the long-term winner over the next decade.


Conclusions

       By year 2006, circuit-switched cellular may carry the bulk of mobile data transactions,

and an oversupply of wide-area wireless may cause prices to continue to drop significantly. From

a financial industry standpoint, mobile computing has been a disappointing market to date, but a

variety of user issues and technology and price improvements are falling in place to make 2004

and 2005 very high-growth years. Enterprises considering the extension of their remote-access

networks into the mobile, wireless realm have faced an array of technology and service-provider

choices. In this array, none of the services, which have varying maturities and capabilities, has

been perfect. Issues such as pricing, geographic deployment and suitable middleware for ease of

use are slowly being resolved. Thus a growing number of companies are planning to deploy

applications whose real business value requires a wireless connection.

   Today, despite much industry hype, wireless data services represent a tiny niche market and

have fewer than 3,300,000 U.S subscribers. Wireless data providers have experienced slow

growth in both the United States and Western Europe. Spotty coverage is an additional burden in
                                                                                          19
Western Europe. However, the rapid development of new models and new technology, combined

with early adaptation of this technology in the Scandinavian countries may lead to faster

adaptation in the rest of the world of products with higher bandwidth and higher utilization

benefits. Overall one may expect the future to contain a variety of data transfer solutions and

standards for many years to come.




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Wall Street Journal. Motorola, Sun Plan Web-Style Networks For Wireless Phones., Eastern
Edition, June 10, 2003, Vol. 233, Issue 112, pB18.




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