Using terminal identification, rather than encryption, will help mobile operators protect content from unauthorised use, service control specialist P-Cube has said.

P-Cube has added a capability to its service control platform that enforces digital rights management not by encrypting data, but by allowng access to content by recognising a device's user profile.
P-Cube's Service Control technology is comprised of a programmable network element that sits in-line with data traffic and creates an intelligent overlay enabling the network to identify, classify, guarantee performance and charge for content-based services. Using Encharge v2.1, mobile operators can control access to their designated content servers based on a subscription plan and device type, which enables the operators to determine if an unauthorised device is attempting to download valuable content.
"Mobile content data is a very lucrative asset for wireless providers. It's imperative that providers protect their assets while simultaneously packaging, delivering and charging for services that permit subscribers to personalise content," said Yuval Shahar, president and chief executive officer of P-Cube. "Our technology-agnostic services layer allows mobile operators to identify individual subscribers and control access to services based on their subscriber profile and device type further demonstrating the importance of service control in IP networks."

Understand your true business needs, Ovum urges businesses

A leading analyst has warned enterprise IT managers to examine carefully the motives behind their mobile enterprise projects.

Jessica Figueras, senior analyst for wireless technologies at Ovum, told delegates at this week's Mobile Enterprise Summit in London that, "Projects that are invented by the IT department will fail if you don't get it right.

"Have a vision, by all means, but make it practical. Know your organisation and how your employees work," she said.

"The technology is really, really complicated [in that there are] so many components -- networks, devices and infrastructure ... The most reliable guide to the choice is the end user. Think about their information needs."

The key to a successful mobile project is to tread carefully with users who may be unfamiliar with mobile devices, and to establish exactly the reason why the rollout is to take place, Figueras said.

"The business goal is not to be a mobilised enterprise," she added. "Try to map mobile technology onto the business processes that are really needed."

External Links

Ovum

Don’t compare us to i-Pass; mobile operators "baffle us"

Corporate remote access specialist GRIC has changed its name to GoRemote and launched a new version of its remote access client software at the same time.

The name change goes along with a new policy to be more involved as a direct entity to the enterprise market, and get involved not just as a remote access specialist but as an all-dancing provider of corporate VPNs and a Frame Realy replacement. GRIC has until now been mainly resold by other service providers and VARs.

For Mobile Europe readers the main innovation of Mobile Office 5 is the inclusion of GPRS as an access option on the client. GPRS joins dial, Ethernet and WLAN as connectivity options. A user who already has a GPRS device of some kind can connect to the GPRS network by hooking his phone to the laptop, or via infrared, or PCMCIA card. Choice of access is determined by the client directory, which tells the user what his best option is, depending on location. The client also includes an SMS button, so that users connected by GPRS can use it to send and receive text messages.

Tom D’Arezzo, director of product management said GoRemote was also including additional administrator management and security functions in the client, to make it easier for enterprises to manage large numbers of mobile or remote workers. VPN technology from Cisco, Nortel, CheckPoint and Microsoft is integrated, as are firewalls and intrusion detection systems. If the VPN connection drops at any point, then the client automatically drops the connection.

D’Arezzo said that GoRemote was looking to partner with mobile operators to help them add value to their enterprise products. In his opinion most operators were too busy looking after their own evolution to 3G and were "not orientated to solving enterprise problems."
"They are looking to sell access technology and access technology is pre-disposed to commoditisation, there has to be a value-add, which is what we offer." D’Arezzo said GoRemote has been in contact with most of the major operators, and has had a standing engagement with Vodafone. 

"The mobile world has to change the way it works," he added. "It is all about consistency and performance levels. The first step is our GPRS capability on the client, where you can interface by clicking twice on the laptop – making it more usable for the user and the CIO, with all security integrated."

He admitted that many operators would have legacy clients "and for reasons that baffle us they have decided to maintain their legacy client or installed base." Other operators, such as Vodafone with its Dashboard product, are developing their own client, but D’Arezzo cautioned that as yet he saw no evidence of businesses using GPRS as a standard connectivity option.

D’Arezzo also had a harsh word for the company most obviously associated as a competitor to GoRemote, iPass. "With our solutions focussed approach we do all the things that iPass does not do," he said. "If you want remote access and you want any colour you like as long as it is black. Their focus is on remote access and security and our focus is on he entire remote workforce orientation of the enterprise. We are comparative except our client is a significant innovation and far above what everybody else is providing," he concluded.

External Links

GoRemote
iPass

Greek mobile operator Cosmote will launch commerically available i-mode from June 7, Mobile Europe has learnt. The operator will announce its i-mode service launch at a press conference scheduled to be held on 3 June, meeting a commitment to have I-mode services up and running in time for the Olympic Games.

Greek mobile operator Cosmote will launch commerically available i-mode from June 7, Mobile Europe has learnt. The operator will announce its i-mode service launch at a press conference scheduled to be held on 3 June, meeting a commitment to have I-mode services up and running in time for the Olympic Games.

This week Cosmote launched its 3G service, bringing mobile video streaming to the Greek market for the first time. The operator will cover 30% of the country at launch, and will offer customers the Sony Ericsson Z1010 and Nokia’s 7600 for video calling and streaming.

The launch of the service conincides with some cheap rates up until July 31 – close to the start of the Olympics. Video calling will cost half the usual rate until that date, at EUR.005 per second, and internet access packages will have twice the normal usage included. Video
streaming will cost users EUR5 per month for a 500Mb bundle, with EUR.001 charged for every kb over the 500MB limit.

Cosmote’s W-CDMA network was supplied by Ericsson, which has the contract for further equipment until the end of 2004. I-mode is a proprietary data service developed by Japanese operator NTT DoCoMo. NTT has signed up several other European operators for I-mode services (Bouygues, WIND, KPN Mobile, E-Plus, Telefonica Movile Espana) and sees great potential for marketing services available on i-mode during the Olympics. Cosmote is one of the major sponsors of the games.

External Links

Cosmote

OSS giant Telcordia has hastened consolidation in the OSS sector by buying up inventory specialist and sometime business partner Granite Systems.

Granite was 20% owned by Telcordia's own parent company Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), and was a partner in Telcordia's Elementive programme. (Elementive is Telcordia's open standard, modular approach for next generation OSS products and solutions.)
Rich Mangan, vp EMEA for Telcordia, said that the acquisition was made at a time when operator and carrier investment in OSS is "taking off".
"Granite has an excellent position in inventory management and we already have a number of dealings with Granite and it seemed a perfect time. We had a good working relationship and a nice cultural fit."
Mangan said that there were no current plans to acquire more of Telcordia's Elementive partners. "I am sure we will continue to succeed with our partners but we will not necessarily buy all of our partners."

Operators are hoping Euro 2004 and the Olympic Games will be the drivers to make 2004 the year when MMS really takes off. But are operators ready for the delivery of mass market numbers of MMS? And is the public aware that it is expected to take part in this orgy of MMS later this year?

Sicap's head of marketing Per-Johan Lundin believes operators are, in general, ready to send out large numbers of MMS to subscribers signing up for updates, clips and news from Portugal or Athens. In any case, if they are not, he advocates a bulk MMS delivery platform Sicap is touting to European mobile operators. 
But he is more concerned that consumers may not be so ready to partake in this sports-fuelled orgy of MMS. Research from Sicap has found that 82% of all UK mobile subscribers have never sent an MMS.
And it's not rocket science as to why. The two main reasons are not knowing how to send an MMS, and confusion over how much it will cost.
"We in the industry are doing it again," he said, referring to the industry's emphasis on technology rather than services. "We have a constant tendency to misjudge the market and how quick it will be. Even our experience with SMS shows that it is only in relatively recent years that it has taken off," Lundin said.
Lundin said that getting as many MMS compatible handsets into the market as possible would be important, and added that he thought the industry had now "largely sorted out" interoperability issues at the network level.
But MMS is not just about photo messaging, and other types of person to person content. Sports events lend themselves perfectly to application to person messaging.
To enable this operators need an infrastructure that will allow them to send large numbers of MMS across the network near-simultaneously.
Sicap has launched a bulk MMS solution that, by prioritising the messages, Lundin said, will enable operators to send out a large amount of MMS without congestion.
But pinning hopes on sport to drive MMS may not be the wisest route, according to others in the industry. A source at Mobile Cohesion said that operators needed to broaden the scope of the communities of interest they could attract with MMS.
Mobile Cohesion markets a platform that enables operators to manage large numbers of content providers.
 "You can talk about sports and news services, Morgan told Mobile Europe, "but not everyone is interested in sport, and in any case that keeps operators with just five or six content providers."
"We are talking about being able to address multiple communities with multiple mobile content providers --- whatever area of interest they serve."
The implication for mobile operators is that not only do they need to have the infrastructure in place to deliver large numbers of MMS, they need their own partner management platforms to be in place.
Sicap product manager Thomas Kienle said that technical integration of network elements is not the hard part. Most integration challenges come on the process side.
"The problem is more in changing process, changing the authorisation process and information input, content flows, billing in real time, the whole integration into legacy systems," Kienle said.

PCCW has launched a UMTS TDD-based wireless broadband network in the UK, using the 3.4GHz spectrum it acquired in 2003, PCCW and its technology supplier IPWireless have announced.

UK Broadband, the PCCW subsidiary service provider, is offering its branded Netvigator high-speed wireless service to residential and business customers living in the Thames Valley west of London at rates starting at £18 per month.
"The service we are offering with UMTS TDD is truly revolutionary and is going to change people's lives," said Mike Butcher, ceo of UK Broadband.
Six areas in the Thames Valley will be the first places in the country to get coverage. This service will initially available in Aldershot, Maidenhead, Reading, Slough, Windsor, and Wokingham. Subscribers will have an initial choice of a 512kbps or 1Mbps services. 
UK Broadband owns a nationwide UK and Northern Ireland contiguous 3.4GHz license. After completing this launch, it will announce its national rollout plans for service in the UK and Northern Ireland. 
UMTS TDD is a standard that uses unpaired spectrum. IP Wireless' Mobile Broadband solution includes network infrastructure, desktop modems and PC cards. There are an increasing number of devices with TDD chips embedded in them.

The manufacturer of the BlackBerry handheld email and phone device, Research In Motion (RIM), has reiterated its commitment to adding Bluetooth capability to the devices.

The BlackBerry has increased in functionality since its launch as an email-only device but users have been unable to connect a Bluetooth headset to use whilst driving.
But that is all set to change, according to RIM's commercial director Ronnie Burnett.
"We will be supporting Bluetooth in future devices, including the 7000 range. Bluetooth will come first, then WiFi a bit later," he said. "It is likely about the end of the year by what I've seen."
"We resisted Bluetooth and WiFi in the early days," added Burnett. "We didn't want to be viewed as some kind of modem. [Now] with most devices having this, we have done a U-turn."
RIM will also unveil additional push capability with the release of version 4 of its BES operating system, including the ability to push address books out to workers in the same manner as with email and calendar.

T-Mobile International has credited its Relax voice tarrifs and personal ring tones for an increase in subscriber numbers in its European territories in the first quarter of 2004.

The carrier had 63.4 million customers across all its majority owned companies, compared to 55.1 million at the end of the fist quarter 2003. During the first quarter 2004 it added 2.4 million customers in total, with half of that number coming from the USA.
T-Mobile Deutschland added 348,000 new customers, over half of them on contract, during the quarter. It also contributed EUR773 million to the group's EBITDA, a slight fall on the previous year's figure. 500,000 customers in total have signed up for the Relax tarrif, since its launch in February, and 300,000 customers have registered for the SoundLogo personal mobile ringtone service.
In the UK, 700,000 signed up with the operator, with churn on a total of 14.3 million customers falling to 1.2%. Revenue was at EUR1.1 billion, up from EUR1 billion in 1Q 2003, and the country made an EBITDA contribution of EUR385 million (EUR278 million 1Q 2003).
T-Mobile said the positive effect of its contractual changes with Virgin Mobile was one reason for the improved EBITDA performance.
In Austria the operator blamed intense competition and the sale of a photographic equipment chain for reduced revenues (EUR236 million against EUR273 million last year) and EBITDA, down 42% at EUR55 million. But the unit also failed to add much in the way of net customers, although 150,000 customers signed up for Relax.
There was better news from the Czech Republic as the unit added over half a million customers in the year from 1Q 2003 to reach almost four million. But revenue was constant and EBITDA down --- this time T-Mobile blamed a 17% increase in VAT as a result of the country joining the European Community.
In the Netherlands revenue improved 37% to EUR250 million and EBITDA was just positive, for the first time, at EUR1 million.
In mobile data, which now stands at  17% of the average revenue per customer in Europe, there are now around 5.5 million active users of t-zones or Photo Messaging services. There were 5.4 million t-zones downloads in Europe in the quarter, with 40% of those accounted for by ringing tones.
Worldwide, T-Mobile carried 12.2 million MMS in the quarter, a rise of 45%. But the number of SMS was still far, far ahead, at 7.36 billion.

Alcatel has joined the push-to-talk (PTT) fray with the launch of its own PTT solution.

Alcatel says its version can run on a wide variety of handsets already commercialized and equipped with this function, thanks to client software enabling interoperability with most of the devices on the market. The system is based on SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) for signalling and RTP (Real Time Transport) for voice broadcasting, following the early specifications of the OMA (Open Mobile Alliance) and uses the capabilities of the IMS (IP Multimedia Sub-system) as specified by 3GPP.
Using Alcatel's Proxy Platform software architecture, the Push To Talk server runs on Intel Xeon processor servers, using Linux OS.
"Push-To-Talk is a key service and a turning point in the mobile operators data strategy," Jean-Michel Cornille, President of Alcatel's mobile solutions activities, said. "The application gives operators an immediate revenue opportunity."

Motorola has opened its European  Innovation Centre in Swindon, in the UK. The centre is designed to demonstrate mobile communications technologies to the end user and to assist customers when choosing technologies appropriate to their subscriber needs.

The newest technology to be showcased at the innovation centre is Motorola's High Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) for UMTS. 
Other technologies that Motorola will be showcasing in the Swindon Innovation Centre include Push-to-Talk over Cellular (PoC), 3G including videos calls, video downloads and streaming as well as simultaneous voice and data calls, Public WLAN, private WLAN and Voice over WLAN demonstrations, and the Motorola SoftSwitch.
"For a mobile operator planning its business strategy, the ability to test and compare real system performance in a live working environment is crucial," said Margaret Rice-Jones, corporate vice president, Motorola.

By Bryan Betts
Self-adapting networks are the only way forward as demand grows for wireless networking,and for voice over wireless (VoWLAN), say established companies and start-ups alike.

The IEEE's proposed 802.11e standard for quality of service (QoS), due later this year, addresses voice and data applications contending for bandwidth, but the problem of too many wireless access points (APs) sharing the same radio space may be a tougher one to crack.
So far, suppliers have looked to centralised security switches as a partial solution, says Isabelle Guis, a WLAN product marketing manager at Nortel. These allow existing APs to be connected to the LAN, creating a centrally managed hybrid wired/wireless network.
Now though they are coming up with adaptive networks, which study the world around them and react accordingly. "Adaptive networks are plug and play so they are more efficient," Guis says, noting that Nortel partnered with Airespace to gain adaptive WLAN technology.
"Both adaptive and hybrid support voice, but an adaptive network has better overall QoS. For example, if an AP in a meeting room is overloaded, the system can recognise that and move users to another AP. And where before we could detect a rogue AP, now we can prevent the client from connecting to it."
Start-up company Bandspeed has also spotted the crowding problem and come up with an ingenious solution: APs that transmit on different channels in different directions, intelligently changing channels and adjusting radio power for the best coverage and least interference.
"There are capacity issues as more users come on board," says Blaine Kohl, Bandspeed's marketing VP. "Today the AP is a hub that everyone shares. Most say you can get six to 10 clients per AP, then you can have three APs per space.
She adds that VoWLAN will make the problems worse, as it will increase the number of WLAN clients and also because phones tend to move around more than PCs.
"People are struggling with RF manageability --- they quickly find out it's not scaleable, as with more than three APs in one space they will hear each other. In large public spaces like airports, it is already becoming a problem."

Symbol Technologies has introduced the Mobility Services Suite (MSS), to help enterprises decrease the time it takes to deploy a mobile infrastructure. The Symbol Mobility Services Suite consists of three components: Mobility Services Platform (MSP); Mobility Services Agents (MSAs); and MSS Studio.

The MSP is an appliance that provides control of deployments by communicating with MSAs resident on all Symbol mobile devices and systems. This enables mobile device and wireless network management and monitoring, including discovery, remote control, configuration, provisioning and troubleshooting.
The MSS Studio enables application developers to create new and extend existing back-end applications to a large variety of mobile computing devices over WLAN, GPRS and other networks. MSS Studio is built on standards including J2EE and Web services. Future versions will include SDKs for Microsoft Visual Studio .NET and .NET Compact Framework.  
The Mobility Services Suite was designed to be extensible to accommodate emerging mobility services, including voice over IP, security and RFID.
The MSS is also designed to  integrate with existing enterprise network management solutions, such as IBM Tivoli, HP OpenView and CA Unicenter, supporting interaction through standard networking protocols.

GRIC Communications is adding support for GPRS in the forthcoming  version of its Mobile Office solution.

GRIC Mobile Office users who subscribe to a GPRS service will be able to wirelessly access their corporate networks and applications, anywhere there is a GPRS signal. End users can also exchange SMS messages with other devices on the GPRS network. GRIC already offers WLAN, Ethernet or dial-up access choices to subscribers.
"GRIC is delivering on our vision of providing secure, reliable, and cost-effective access to corporate networks, and applications using all popular access methods including wireless," said Rob Fuggetta, senior vice president of worldwide marketing for GRIC.