3GSM is the telecommunications industry’s biggest event of the year, bringing together major industry players, small venture capitals, and everything in between. NME reports from Barcelona.
The 12th annual 3GSM exhibition was relocated from its usual spot in the south of France to Barcelona, where an estimated 55,000 visitors had the chance to visit some 962 exhibitors and hear a variety of executives from the global telecommunication industry give engaging presentations on a range of issues pertinent to the industry.
The terms ‘voice over IP' and ‘fixed mobile convergence' (FMC) - forbidden fruits in many parts of the Middle East - could frequently be heard echoing around the event's eight halls. The IP world made its presence felt through a variety of VoIP clients that were being offered by companies eager to leverage off the increasing number of Wi-Fi enabled handsets on display; giving the event's numerous VoIP starved Middle Eastern visitors an opportunity to get an in depth look on what they are missing out on.
HP made an early dash for the spotlight with demonstration of its Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) based smartphone, powered by Microsoft's new Windows Mobile 6.0 operating system, and designed for enterprise customers. The new Wi-Fi and UMA enabled smartphone will be offered to BT Fusion business users and, according to HP will eliminate the need for a desk phone - being able to switch from GSM to VoIP when in wireless proximity.
"Delivering and supporting fixed mobile convergence solutions is an integral part of HP's mobility strategy that will deliver results for carriers and enterprises," Eric Cador, vice president, HP personal systems group, Europe Middle East and Africa, stated at the event.
Business mobility was also high on the agenda for Nokia. The Finnish company made a series of announcements focused removing the barriers to widespread adoption of business mobility and introduced the second wave of its E-series business devices, as well as its Intellisync mobile business software solution.
"The tipping point for widespread adoption of business mobility is upon us, and it will take new levels of performance, greater functionality and interoperability, and broad access to mobile solutions beyond the executive suite for customers and operators to realise the benefits of anytime, anywhere productivity and collaboration," said Antti Vasara, vice president, mobile devices unit, enterprise solutions, Nokia.
Cisco systems announced two new developments for its NGN solutions with its Cisco 7600 and 12000 series routers, providing telcos with a less costly and easier solution to provide bandwidth in the network while improving network architectural flexibility.
Siemens and Nokia caught the attention of delegates with the official unveiling of its new joint venture brand. Nokia Siemens Networks' proposed portfolio plan encompasses six business units: radio access; service core and applications; operation support systems; Broadband Access; IP/Transport; and Services.
Speaking at 3GSM CEO-designate Simon Beresford-Wylie stressed the importance of consolidation in the vendor industry, in order to drive towards his rather ambitious goal of five billion ‘always on' broadband users connected by 2015 and generate more activity on the enterprise mobility and FMC level.
"In 2015, we will live in a broadband-IP world, in which five billion people in practice will be always on, connected to the internet, rich content, services and each other. While Nokia Siemens Networks will have the scale to compete, but we know that is just a starting point."