Posts Tagged ‘GSM’

iPhonAsia comment: This GSM/TD-SCDMA back-and-forth transition will be very important to handset owners and will ideally be incorporated into a TD iPhone 3G

China Mobile Researches New 2G/3G Exchange Technology

Sohu IT, 11/21/08 – Full post > HERE

picture-21China Mobile (NYSE: CHL; 0941.HK) has revealed that the company is currently cooperating with chip and terminal manufacturers to research and develop new interoperable 2G and 3G technology, and is now conducting tests of the technology.

No problems currently arise when TD-SCDMA mobile phones transfer to the GSM network, however when GSM mobile phones transfer to the TD-SCDMA network, phones must be restarted before they can operate correctly. China Mobile has stated that, once developed, the new technology will allow for smooth transitioning between the GSM and TD-SCDMA networks. Once the new technology is launched, current interoperable software will also need to be upgraded.


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China Mobile Upgrades GSM in Preparation for TD-SCDMA

picture-16At a Guangdong 3G Industry Alliance forum held yesterday, a spokesperson for China Mobile’s TD-SCDMA project revealed that the company will invest RMB 110 bln to upgrade its GSM networks in preparation for TD-SCDMA. China Mobile is currently testing whether it can upgrade its GSM network to act as the core network for TD-SCDMA technology.

At the same forum, Wu Ping, CEO of Chinese wireless baseband chipset provider Spreadtrum (Nasdaq: SPRD) mentioned that Spreadtrum has made investments in TD-SCDMA technology for the last five years, and to date has seen virtually zero return on its investment. He claims that the greatest problem is the lack of clear industry development.

A manager at TD-SCDMA solution provider Datang Mobile stated that China Mobile originally intended to move forward with TD-SCDMA terminal procurement in November, but to date there has been no news on that matter. Taiwanese fabless semiconductor firm MediaTek consequently has a storehouse with several hundred thousand TD-SCDMA chips.

Editor’s Note: China Mobile plans to have both its GSM and TD-SCDMA networks share the same service management, support, and core systems.

Full post > HERE

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China Mobile is apparently not betting the franchise (no surprise) on TD-SCDMA 3G.  The article below, via China Trade Information, outlines a new deal between Ericsson and China’s two largest wireless carriers – China Mobile (expanded GSM/GRPS in 19 regions) and China Unicom (expanded GSM in 10 regions).

Ericsson will supply the China carriers core radio/network equipment, as well as technical support, to expand the GSM and GRPS  networks in regions throughout China.  The total investment in this network expansion is estimated to be $1.4 billion US.  


Ericsson inks US$1.44 bln GSM expansion deal with China

Ericsson, the Swedish telecom equipment supplier, has signed GSMexpansion framework agreement with two leading Chinese mobile operators, China Mobile and China Unicom, valued at US$1.3 billion and US$140 million respectively, sources reported.

Under the agreement, Ericsson will assist China Mobile to expand GSM/GPRS coverage and capacity in 19 regions across China by supplying core and radio network equipment as well as related technical support and services.

See full article > HERE



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Update: March 17, 2008

Adding further credibility to the scenario outlined below is a March 17 report via China Trade Information – China Telecom seeking CDMA sales, technical staff

This report notes China Telecom is continuing to make active preparations for the acquisition of Unicom’s CDMA business.  


Li Yizhong – Newly appointed head of the Ministry for Information and Industry. xinsrc_562120321130659319751-1.jpg



image courtesy BDA  

China Telecom Industry Restructuring Scenario (one of several) in Nutshell:

Analysts have speculated that following the reshuffle of China’s telecom industry (TBA post Olympics), China Telecom will be responsible for W-CDMA network construction (after it formally receives a license to operate in the mobile industry). In addition, China Unicom’s CDMA business will be taken over by China Telecom, China Unicom’s GSM business will be taken over by China Netcom, and China TieTong will be merged with China Mobile. These three reshuffled operators – China Mobile, China Telecom and China Netcom – will therefore all have fixed-line, mobile and broadband businesses, as well as 3G licenses.


There is also a behind the scenes battle (now being waged) over the rights to build out the W-CDMA 3G network.  After the industry reshuffle is complete, it’s likely that only one China carrier will be responsible for development of the W-CDMA network and China Mobile is planning to compete with China Telecom for the rights.


Confused yet? And what the heck does all of this have to do with Apple iPhone in China? … Read the articles below and the implications of “iPhone in China” may become a “bite” more clear…

TD-SCDMA may not be an eternal flame 

Forthcoming iPhone launch in China


apple_unicom.jpg   200703010032_73568.jpg chinamobilelogo.jpg




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Duncan Clark, Chairman of BDA China Ltd., a research firm in Beijing discusses China Mobile, TD-SCDMA, the state of 3G in China and Apple iPhone. Video: December 2007 

December 21, 2007 Duncan Clark, Chairman of BDA China, says that as soon as TD-SCDMA, China’s homegrown 3G standard, is ready for primetime, Huawei and ZTE will have a big stake in China’s mobile future. 

   NPR Interview with Duncan Clark

Podcast Pacific Telecom Conference January 17, 2008.  

NPR Interview with Duncan Clark

BDA Telecom 2005 Market Review > HERE 


BDA Connect

For iPhonAsia readers interested in learning more about the direction of the telecom industry in China and India, I highly recommend a PowerPoint presentation developed by Duncan Clark, Chairman BDA Connect – a Beijing based consultancy and investment advisory firm.  This material was presented at the January 2008 Pacific Telecom Conference in Hawaii. See > HERE


  image courtesy BDA  – http://www.bdaconnect.com:80/  


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