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Thursday, June 22, 2006

WiFi is the key...

Motorola Q... to wide-spread adoption of Mobile Web 2.0 software. The presence of WiFi features in mobile will get people free internet access through public hotspots, instead of paying large bills to the operators. In turn, the operators will lower the prices for the paid services (3G/UMTS/HSDPA) and this will open the way to a new round of mobile applications that can concentrate on providing enhanced functionality, while downloading all the data needed using the internet.

Major phone manufacturers have released this year a few phones with WiFi, and more are coming soon. I'm not talking about Windows Mobile-based PDA/smartphone hybrids, that have had WiFi for some time, I'm talking about "normal-looking" phones. Nokia has the 6136, E60, E61, E70, N80, N91, N92, N93 coming this summer, Sony-Ericsson has the P990, Motorola has the A910 and has just announced the Q.

Currently, the prices for internet access set by the mobile operators are quite high, around $0.5-$1/MB, with flat rates around $50-$100/month. They probably consider it a premium service, especially if it goes through a fast connection — EDGE/234kbps or 3G/UMTS/384kbps are usual these days in GSM networks in Europe. I'm sure this will change soon, even if low-mid-end phones don't get WiFi yet — high-end phone owners are the ones using most internet features and paying the most for them.


At 2:55 AM, June 24, 2006, Blogger E-series said...

I agree. I just got myself a Nokia E61 and an E70 both with WiFi. I never thought I would use the WiFi capabilities as much as I do. I rely on them all the time.


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