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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

So... any more UMA handsets in the pipeline?

At various conferences this year, people have been anticipating as many as 20-25 WiFi UMA-capable phones on the market by mid-2007.

Well, given that the current crop are all pretty long in the tooth - Nokia announced the 6136 at 3GSM in February, as did Moto with the A910. The Samsung T-709/P200 was also being talked about in the same timeframe, although it was only formally announced in July. The LG-CL400 was announced back in Sep 2005, but as far as I know hasn't shipped commercially as part of any of the current UMA services. There was also a Chi Mei ODM one, that seems to have disappeared too. (plus the Bluetooth V560 & RAZR)

But other than those.... no announcements, no launches, no sneak photos circulating on the web. Unless there's a huge imminent launch of several new ones, given the typical 4-8 month test & release cycle that seems to be normal with FMC devices, I can't see too many more being ready to ship by Q2 2007.

Mind you, there's a BT analyst event about wireless tomorrow, so who knows, perhaps I've spoken too soon....


Anonymous said...

A major mobile operator commented in October that they expected to see around 15 UMA models in 2007.

Out of the models that are currently out in the market (A910, 6136, and 709/200), I would say the Samsung P200 is the coolest one - a phone that I actually wouldn't mind carrying around.

The 6136 and the A910 are bigger and a bit clunkier and don't look as good when you hold them next to a P200.

Now a UMA-enabled RAZR device would be really cool...

Anonymous said...

You are also missing out on the NEC and Panasonic terminals that NTT DoCoMo is using for its enterprise service (albeit on W-CDMA). Also, you may want to watch the KTF Swing/Nespot terminal line-up, not completely 'UMA' but certainly very close on EV-DO.

Anonymous said...

For the poster that commented on NTT DoCoMo, are you saying that they are using an 'UMA Handset' for their enterprise services (which is the topic of this thread)?

Dean Bubley said...

The DoCoMo NEC N900iL phone isn't UMA, it's SIP-based (it's being replaced by the N902 in 2007). I'm not aware of the Panasonic one, but if it's intended for enterprise use then I'm 99% certain it won't be UMA either.

The "15 models in '07" seems to me to be a step backwards from a lot of operator & vendor predictions I've heard this year, which had typically featured numbers like 20 or 25.

It will also be interesting to see when we get 3G/UMA devices, the lack of which is a major stumbling block for operators at the moment. Even then, the UMA indoor bit will still attach to a 2G core network - there still isn't a full standard for delivering 3G services over the WiFi/UMA part of the system.