I've written before about the new Japanese operator E-Mobile, that's been supporting VoIP on its HSPA network, via a data-centric device, with a client from Jajah.
It's now announced two more voice-centric devices, one a modified HTC TyTn II affectionately called the eMonster, and the other from Toshiba. Insofar as I can work out from the press releases, these work on "broadband voice" which I think is marketingspeak for VoIP.
Out of coverage areas, the phones' voice roams onto DoCoMo's network (for an extra fee). It's not obvious whether this means it hands over to circuit, or carries on using HSDPA.
(btw - if anyone more familiar with the product can confirm that it's using VoIP rather than circuit, please post a comment - thanks)
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008
E-Mobile's E-Monster - VoIPo3G in Japan
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Both devices could easily use VoIP if Microsoft had included a working VoIP client in Windows Mobile 6. Unfortunately making VoIP work with the standard components requires a lot of hackery and even after that there are a lot of issues. One can only wonder what became of Microsoft's announcement to include VoIP functionality in this OS...
As for 3rd party software, there are few decent VoIP solutions for Windows Mobile that allow for using VoIP comfortably. EM currently has teamed up with JahJah which requires customers to enter their credit card information prior to using it. That and the low quality of the application itself makes it pretty much worthless for the customers.
So due to the lack of a decent client EM customers are going to use DoCoMo's PSTN rather than VoIPo3G until EMs own network has grown sufficiently to support a VoIP voice structure of their own. The deal with DoCoMo is set to end after three years in March 2010 which might be just the perfect time to roll out a VoIPo3G solution .
Long story short: E-Mobile might experiment with a nucleus VoIPo3G network that could grow into their main solution one day while relying on circuit voice provided by DoCoMo for most parts of Japan for the next three years.
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