A new series of bi-directional amplifiers (BDA) and duplexers from wireless technology group, Radio Frequency Systems (RFS) offers a convenient and inexpensive means of overlaying universal mobile telecommunication services (UMTS) on existing second-generation (2G) in-building RF distribution systems.

“RFS has had the foresight to build in future-proofing in its 2G in-building RF coverage solutions--as a result, these are sufficiently broadband to support the simple overlay of new third-generation (3G) UMTS services,” said Peter Raabe, RFS Global Product Manager for Wireless Distributed Communications Systems. “In many cases though, the UMTS RF power levels may prove inadequate, due to the higher insertion losses of the 2G network cabling. The new RFS I-BDA2100 and I-DUX2G/3G combination is one of the first on the market to offer a cost-effective and simple means of overcoming this situation.”
The series comprises two band-specific UMTS bi-directional amplifiers (I-BDA-2100-1 and I-BDA2100-2), plus a broadband duplexer (I-DUX2G/3G-1). The new BDAs supply 35 dB nominal gain in RF downlink and uplink, and are provided in two output power ratings, 18 dBm and 9 dBm. Used in combination with the new duplexer, the bi-directional amplifiers may be used to support a ‘3G on 2G’ overlay on an existing broadband in-building system.
Both I-BDA-2100 models support the full UMTS band, and provide automatic gain control in accordance with the Third Generation Partnership Project’s (3GPP) specified UMTS requirements. Manual gain control is also provided for final system levelling. The unit’s 10-30Vdc power requirements can be realized ‘locally’ via the unit’s power port, or ‘remotely’ via the RF coaxial feeds, permitting the units to be cascaded in a wide range of combinations.
The I-DUX2G/3G-1 duplexer is uniquely broadband, with its 2G port supporting frequencies between 800 and 1880 MHz. It provides particularly low insertion loss at both the 2G and 3G ports, and comes complete with two separate on-board dc power input ports, allowing even greater flexibility in system power configuration.

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The Open Base Station Architecture Initiative, (OBSAI) today announced the availability of base station specifications covering the mechanics and functionality aspects of key modules, to complement the existing OBSAI interface specifications for the subsystem areas of Transport, Baseband and Control. This latest announcement means that the OBSAI members now have a complete suite of both interface and hardware specifications that will enable the production of base station modules to fit any OBSAI compliant base station - thereby widening the customer base of many OBSAI members. The 100 member strong group has also completed a power system interface.

Peter Kenington, OBSAI Technical Work Group Chairperson said, "It has been one of OBSAI’s goals to work towards an open market for base station modules, where genuine interoperability and interchangeability at the base station sub system level can take place. This will bring benefits to many players in our industry - from module and component vendors, who will be able to re-deploy R&D resources more effectively, to operators who will eventually realise a reduced spares inventory. It will soon be realistic to base a BTS module procurement specification almost entirely on the appropriate OBSAI specifications, plus the relevant air interface standard. This is a unique benefit of OBSAI."

Jukka Klemettila, OBSAI Chairperson, said: "We are very pleased with the progress of OBSAI. OBSAI compatible components and modules are now available on the market as previously promised. In addition to the module specifications, OBSAI has also just completed work on the power interface specification that defines communication interfaces between power systems and existing OBSAI modules."

These new specifications will enhance speed to market, reduce the cost of BTS systems and allow BTS sub-system vendors to focus engineering resources towards creating greater innovation in all areas of BTS engineering.

OBSAI is also currently ensuring compatibility with newer air interfaces, such as TD-SCDMA and WiMax

OBSAI previously announced the availability of internal interface specifications and the System Reference Document, for the Transport, Control, Baseband, and Radio modules in October 2003. One of the benefits of these specifications is that they are air interface agnostic and are compatible with WCDMA, CDMA and GSM/Edge base stations.

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Provides data access for enterprise customers

As demand for "on the road access" to corporate data grows, PeopleSoft is advancing its mobile strategy by adopting Intellisync's Mobile Suite platform to enable access to business information in PeopleSoft applications anywhere, anytime and through any device for its enterprise customers.

Intellisync Corporation, a leading provider of synchronization and mobilization solutions, today announced that it has been selected by PeopleSoft, Inc. to enhance its portfolio of mobility solutions. PeopleSoft, the world's second largest provider of enterprise application software, will license the Intellisync® Mobile Suite to provide additional PeopleSoft laptop/tablet PC solutions around the world.

"Increased mobility and higher demands for customer responsiveness have created a mission-critical need for anywhere, anytime access to information," said Dean Alms, vice president, product management, PeopleSoft Tools & Technology. "Intellisync helps us meet the evolving user and business process demands of a complete mobile solution."

The award-winning Intellisync Mobile Suite platform provides both wired and wireless access to business data. The platform's scalable, high-performance Data Sync engine extends custom data residing in PeopleSoft to mobile workers' laptop PCs, when and where they need it. Intellisync's technology also enables desktop-based and server-to-server synchronization of contacts, calendars and tasks between PeopleSoft's enterprise applications and Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Domino groupware.

"We are very pleased to be selected by PeopleSoft to enhance their mobility platform and ensure that PeopleSoft users have universal access to their enterprise information," explained Woodson (Woody) Hobbs, president and chief executive officer of Intellisync. "Our relationship will extend Intellisync into both the PeopleSoft Enterprise and PeopleSoft EnterpriseOne product families. PeopleSoft is one of the most innovative enterprise application providers in the world. The level of sophistication, scale and functionality required by such an industry leader is extremely high, and we are delighted that Intellisync was selected above all other potential solutions. We believe this agreement represents a cornerstone in the creation of a complete mobility environment for PeopleSoft users around the world."

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United Clearing PLC is pleased to announce that it been awarded an additional contract to clear O2 Germany’s new 3G international roaming traffic. In addition to this new agreement, O2 Germany have also extended their existing 2G contract, valuing the combined services at approximately Euro 300,000 over the next 24 months.

Mr. Daniel Nagler, Director of Sales at United Clearing commented; “We are delighted to provide additional 3G clearing services to O2. United Clearing is proud of O2’s continued confidence in our ability to deliver quality services that will provide O2 with cost and resource savings and deliver a professional and efficient settlement service for their international roaming partners and clients. We look forward to continuing to deliver O2 our usual high quality of service and attention.

Dr. Dirk Schmelzer, Vice President of International Carrier Services, O2 Germany,  said; "Since joining the United Clearing program in August 2003, we have been very impressed and pleased with their performance. United Clearing skill and expertise has had a significant and positive impact on O2 Germany roaming business. We felt that United Clearing was the natural choice to manage this new service and we are delighted that they will be bringing the same level of care and attention to detail to the management of our new 3G roaming traffic.”

The European Computer Telecoms Group (ECT), Europe's market leader for intelligent value-added services, has provided a turnkey solution for ring back tone service to the Tele2 Group, Europe's leading alternative telecommunications supplier of fixed-line and mobile telephony solutions.

ECT thus brings its new solution to Scandinavia after successful implementations in Germany and China.

In a competitive bidding process, ECT was recently awarded the contract for Tele2's new product, Ringuppsignaler. With its extensive experience in ring back tone projects, ECT was able to provide Tele2 customised user and network interfaces with the shortest possible time-to-market and highest possible cost-efficiency.

"I am pleased that our long-time partner, the Tele2 Group, has now also joined the ranks of major mobile operators utilizing our solution for ring back tone service," said Dr. Marshall E. Kavesh, the ECT Group's CEO.

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InphoMatch and Mobileway, the leading providers of global mobile messaging interoperability and value-added wireless data services, today announced a merger of their companies.

By uniting InphoMatch's mobile carrier business with Mobileway's wireless marketing and entertainment services, the combined entity occupies a unique position at the core of the mobile industry. InphoMatch CEO Neville Street has been named president and chief executive officer of the newly-formed entity. The company will complete a re-branding process and unveil a new name and corporate identity in the fall.

This union pairs InphoMatch's global, carrier-grade, messaging interoperability network with Mobileway's worldwide connectivity, content delivery, and settlement capabilities. The merger results in unrivalled carrier coverage, outstanding quality of service, and market-leading technology backed by a solid financial foundation. Both companies have proven experience in the mobile message delivery space, and have worked with many global brands to execute mobile marketing events around the world.

The company will be headquartered in Chantilly, Virginia, USA, with offices in San Francisco, London, Paris, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, Hamburg, Madrid, São Paulo, and Milan. The new company has more than 200 employees worldwide.

"As mobile messaging grows in volume and complexity, the industry needs a proven leader who can offer global reach and an outstanding quality of service," said Street. "The combination of Mobileway and InphoMatch creates the global footprint our customers and prospects need, as well as carrier-grade connectivity and the ability to extend their brands and content to wireless devices. Because the two companies have virtually no overlap in terms of geography or scope, we are confident that this integration will be seamless to both existing customers and potential prospects."

Merging InphoMatch and Mobileway creates a company with comprehensive worldwide mobile coverage. InphoMatch, delivering over one billion messages each month, currently has more than 80 carrier contracts; a leading WNP solution; a high-volume interoperability transport platform with real-time reporting functionality; and an integrated, Web-based, carrier-focused Storefront platform for content delivery and management. Mobileway has more than 150 carrier connections; deep premium SMS integrations; a distributed SS7/SMPP platform; a content adaptation management platform; and an integrated billing platform. The combined company provides customers with the best of both companies-without the need to reinvent technologies, tools, or teams.

Street concluded, "The new company brings together a management team comprised of the industry's most seasoned minds, tremendously innovative technologies, and the financial resources necessary to ensure the success of this merger."

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Si.mobil, today announces the appointment of a new CEO, Zoran Thaler. He is replacing Bojan Dremelj who after nine successful years will stay on as a member of Si.mobil’s Supervisory board.

Zoran Thaler has extensive experience in telecommunications, especially in consultancy and international relations. He has also been active in Slovenian politics for many years, having served two Governments as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy to the Parliament. Since Zoran left politics in mid 1997 he has been focusing on international consultancy projects, advising foreign investors on Slovenia and the region.

From now on, Si.mobil will therefore be headed by Zoran Thaler as CEO and Andreas Maierhofer, who continues as COO. Zoran Thaler stressed: “My goal is to enhance the growth of Slovenia’s second largest mobile operator within a very challenging market environment. We will devote concerted efforts to actively supporting and promoting competition-friendly market conditions.”

Under Bojan Dremelj Si.mobil developed into an important player in the Slovenian telecommunications market. Si.mobil became part of the mobilkom austria group and signed a strategic partnership agreement with Vodafone. The last year has marked many successes at Si.mobil, such as entering into the third generation of mobile telecommunications, introducing a new tariff system and launching Vodafone live!, the leading mobile life style service for residential customers.

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Telekom Austria

The NEC e228 video mobile is exclusively available on the 3 network with 3’s great value pay-as-you-go tariff, ThreePay. The NEC e228 is NEC’s sixth addition to 3’s handset portfolio and is now on sale in over 7,000 outlets across the UK.

The NEC e228 is designed to a high specification in performance, size and style and offers 3’s exciting video services, including person-to-person video calling, at unbeatable value.
The bar-design measures 129x53x21.5mm and weighs just 125g. It has two high-resolution cameras and a powerful speakerphone for hands-free video and voice-calling. It also has a high quality, 65,536 full-colour screen which is great for watching 3’s full-length music videos from BMG and football action from the Barclays Premiership.
The handset also offers email, an MP3 player, 19MB of internal memory and a memory card slot for a Sony MemoryStickTM Duo to store an extra 128MB of content. Additional features include vibrate alert, calendar function, calculator with currency converter and headset.
Gareth Jones, COO, 3 commented: “3 is shaking up the status quo in the UK mobile market by offering great value video mobiles and exciting mobile content. 3 is redefining what customers can expect to get for their money. It’s no surprise that the predecessor to the NEC e228 has been the UK’s best-selling pre-pay handset*. We expect the NEC e228, with its slimline design and high resolution camera, to be just as popular.”
Tony Hutson, Director, NEC UK said: “As the excellence of 3’s 3G experience gains increased traction in the UK, so its products and services continue to appeal to a wider and wider audience. We have been committed to working with 3 to ensure that its portfolio of handsets meets and exceeds customer demands for performance and functionality, and the launch of the e228 is the latest step in bringing the benefits of 3G to more mobile users than ever before – delivering an affordable and accessible device.”
ThreePay, 3’s ground-breaking pay-as-you-go tariff, offers pre-pay customers the same great value as contract tariffs. ThreePay video mobiles like the NEC e228 can be purchased in stores such as Argos, Superdrug and other high-street names like Carphone Warehouse and Phones4U. Top-up vouchers can be purchased in over 60,000 outlets, wherever you see the industry “top-up” sign.

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3 UK

Following the successful launch of Vodafone's 3G Mobile Connect Card for business customers in April this year and the completion of initial trials for its 3G consumer service, Vodafone UK is offering selected customers the opportunity to shape a significant stage of its roll out of 3G services. Several thousand customers will be offered the opportunity to experience Vodafone live! 3G in the company's largest trial to date for a new product or service, ahead of full commercial launch later this year.

Vodafone live!, the industry-leading, multi-media consumer service, is being enhanced by 3G technology in a series of phases. Specially targeted Vodafone live! customers in London, Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow will be able to experience the benefits of Vodafone live! 3G, during this trial.

Vodafone live! 3G will bring customers improved quality, sound, pictures and videos, as well as increased speed when downloading games and ringtones.  They will also be able to access a select range of new services such as video calling, video downloads (sport, news, music and general entertainment) and the streaming of live events to their handset, as well as existing services such as video messaging. The initial trial handsets will be the Samsung Z105, shortly followed by the Sony Ericsson Z1010.

Customer feedback will provide Vodafone with invaluable data for its full launch service. Vodafone live! 3G will be enhanced later this year, when there will be a wider selection of handsets available, together with an even more extensive range of content.

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Opera Telecom, the fastest growing international provider of premium rate mobile services, has today announced its acquisition of Aria Mobile Telecoms, the Dublin-based mobile technology infrastructure specialist. This follows the company's recent announcement that it has acquired MMS technology provider, Brainstorm.

Aria Mobile Telecoms was formed in 2003 in a joint venture between Opera Telecom and Diva Consulting. Recent negotiations have resulted in Opera Telecom taking 100% ownership of the organisation, re-branding the business as Opera Telecom Technologies Limited. The company will continue to trade out of its Dublin offices.
Opera Telecom Technologies Limited will offer the complete mobile technology infrastructure package - from IVR software and database management to billing and delivery, website administration and content - to media companies worldwide.  The company's Gateway product is a fully featured Messaging Management system that is built to support high volumes of SMS traffic. Its main deployment is in Central and South America and will give the Opera Telecom Group a strong foothold into the Latin American market.
Gary Corbett, Managing Director of the Opera Telecom Group, comments, "The acquisition of Aria extends our unique proposition to media organisations as they no longer need to enter into local agreements with content suppliers, infrastructure and technology providers and website designers or country-specific regulatory organisations to satisfy royalty responsibilities - the acquisition of Aria means that Opera will fulfil all of these requirements on an international basis." 
He continues, "Our original stake in Aria allowed us to rapidly expand our customer base in Europe, US and Asia-Pacific. Latin America is now a major growth market for us, with an estimated total of 123 million mobile users, compared with only 89 million fixed line customers [Source: Research and Markets Ltd]. With this figure increasing rapidly and with such a strong sales proposition, now is the optimum time to be entering the market."
Opera Telecom Group recently announced its year end financial results, reporting a record turnover of £90.4m with £5.4m profit and demonstrating the company's continued success over the past 12 months at a time when many competitors have issued profit warnings and lost market share. Over the next 18 months Opera Telecom will be considering acquisitions and partnerships with other key players in the market to ensure this success continues.
Corbett concludes, "By having such advanced technology platforms we are able to guarantee superior performance of high volume mobile marketing campaigns. There really isn't anyone that has such an extensive offering in the market, nor one that performs so reliably and consistently to make sure that every message reaches its intended recipient."

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Opera Telecom

"Welcome. My name is Rita and I'm going to help you configure your mailbox." Rita is the personal assistant who will help Videomail users to configure their new message mailbox.

TMN has just launched Videomail, one more innovative 3rd generation service supported on video calls. It is unique in Portugal and one of the first of its kind to be launched in the world.

A little over three months ago TMN revolutionised mobile telecommunications with sight and sound in real time, when it launched the first i9 3G product, one of the first in the world to make video calls possible. One month later it launched the first video answering service. The launch today of a pioneering service such as Videomail will strengthen the attitude of the leading mobile phone operator in Portugal: permanent innovation geared to customers' expectations and needs.

With TMN Videomail, any user of the video-call service can now leave video messages in the mailbox of customers who do not answer a video-call. The concept is similar to that of voicemail for voice calls, but Videomail allows people to receive and record video-calls in the mailbox. In other words, TMN customers can record any video they want their interlocutors to see and hear when leaving a video-message.

Rita is the personal assistant who will help Videomail users to configure their new message box. Rita interacts with the client or with whoever makes a video-call in a simple and objective manner to help them use the service.

Messages left following an unanswered voice call are also recorded in the same message box and in the same way as traditional voice-mail.

Consulting one's Videomail box is free until 31 December in Portugal when using an i9 3G. The promotional tariffs for video-calls are also extended to the end of the year: 5 cents per minute in the TMN network and 39 cents per minute for the other Portuguese mobile networks.

At the same time as this launch TMN places on the market a new i9 3G mobile phone. The Samsung Z 105 costs 499.90 euros (VAT included) and is available in all TMN shops, with an additional discount at this moment of 10 euros when exchanged for another mobile phone.

Openwave Systems,  the leading provider of open software products and services for the communications  industry,  today  announced  a  collaboration with SAGEM, a major  international  player in telecommunications manufacturing to deliver
the  SG321i,  one  of the first i-mode compliant phones to be produced by a European  manufacturer,  to  Bouygues  Telecom,  a  French  mobile operator acknowledged  for its policy of innovation. The phone will use the Openwave Mail  Client for i-mode and Openwave Mobile Browser Version 7 (V7 Browser), the flagship application from Openwave Phone Suite Version 7.

The  popular  i-mode  service,  created  by  Japan's  NTT DoCoMo, Inc, has already  been  launched  in  a  number of countries throughout Europe, each 'with  unique  content.  As NTT DoCoMo continues to roll out its service in Europe  and  other  regions,  operators and handset manufacturers intend to
develop   and   integrate  i-mode  compliant  phones  with  their  existing standards. Openwave client software delivers market leading implementations of both i-mode and Open Mobile Alliance standards.

"We   appreciate   Openwave's   devoted  effort  and  cooperation  for  the development of the i-mode browser and messaging client for the SAGEM i-mode handset,"  commented  Mr.  Shig  Sando,  Managing  Director,  i-mode Global
Business,  NTT  DoCoMo,  Inc.   "We  are confident of the success in global i-mode as we continue our cooperative relationship, and it is our intention to strengthen our relationship for the global expansion of i-mode."

SAGEM  was  one  of the first European manufacturers to act on NTT DoCoMo's call  to  develop  i-mode  phones  outside  of  Japan. With Openwave client software,  SAGEM  has  created  a  consistent and unique user-interface for their  i-mode  phone while leveraging the investments that they are already
making in phone software and applications.

"The i-mode SG321i is an invaluable asset for SAGEM's GSM product portfolio since  it is not only our first product based on i-mode technology but also the  very  first slide phone that we launch and we are happy to have worked on it with Openwave," said Thierry Buffenoir, Managing Director of SAGEM’s Mobile Phones Division.

"We're  proud  to  be a part of SAGEM's market building momentum for i-mode phones  in  Europe," said Don Listwin, chief executive officer at Openwave. "We  are partnering to deliver phones that work on any network and platform
and dramatically improve the user experience."

"We  are delighted to be working with SAGEM and Openwave, and welcome their work  in  the  i-mode marketplace," said Benoît Louvet, Multimedia / i-mode Director at Bouygues Telecom.  "With the rapid growth of i-mode services in
France  and  in  Europe, Bouygues Telecom is pleased to see Openwave take a leading  role,  combining  their multimedia heritage with innovation in the implementation of i-mode to help us deliver an improved user experience."

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Alcatel announced today the signing of a contract with Mobile TeleSystems, the largest mobile operator in Russia and Ukraine, for the deployment of an MTS EDGE (Enhanced Data rate for GSM Evolution) network over the city of Samara, one city with over one million inhabitants in the Federation of Russia.

Under the term of this contract, Alcatel will enable the EDGE capability of the GSM/GPRS radio and mobile core network it has already supplied to MTS in Samara, using the multi-standard capability of its industry leading Evolium solution. The EDGE technology, natively embedded in Alcatel Evolium radio access solution already installed at the MTS network, will be activated thanks to a simple software activation. Delivery of the solution is scheduled for completion by the third quarter of 2004.

The Alcatel’s solution will enable MTS to provide its customers in the Povolzhie region with new broadband mobile applications and services such as MMS, high-speed access to the Internet and electronic messaging service, or fast downloading of large volume of data. The commercial launch of the EDGE network is scheduled for fourth quarter of  2004. 

Vassily Sidorov, President and CEO of MTS, commented: “One of the mobile operators’ priorities today is to deliver the most advanced applications and services to the end-users while ensuring costs control.  Thanks to the flexibility of Alcatel’s future-safe solution, we will be able to deploy a major technology in order to offer our customers the latest broadband services in a fast and economic manner”. 

Marc Rouanne, chief operating officer of Alcatel’s mobile activities, added: “We are glad to partner with MTS on the deployment of a leading EDGE network. Our close cooperation in the past few years allowed us to get to this stage. This project demonstrates how we can help our customers to provide their subscribers with user-centric broadband services, on the fast growing Russian mobile market as well as in other growing countries where Alcatel’s mobile solutions are enjoying a leadership position.”

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Mobile operator Uralsvyazinform awards order for GSM technology and signs letter of intent worth 40 million euros for future network expansion

The fourth largest Russian mobile provider and leading operator in the Urals, OAO Uralsvyazinform (USI), has commissioned Siemens mobile, the mobile communication group at Siemens, to expand its GSM network. The order covers delivery and installation of GSM technology in the city of Yekaterinburg, the Sverdlovsk region and the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous District, and is worth 13.5 million euros. In addition, Siemens and USI have signed a letter of intent which sees network expansion in the Urals covering a total volume of around 40 million euros for the next two years.

By the end of August 2004, Siemens will expand the existing GSM network of the Russian mobile provider Uralsvyazinform in the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous District. This encompasses the delivery of more than 100 base stations as well as switches for up to 500,000 subscribers.

In Yekaterinburg, and the Sverdlovsk region, where USI acquired a new GSM 900/1800 license in December 2003, Siemens will supply 170 EDGE-capable base stations, switching systems with high-performance processors for 500,000 subscribers, a central network management system, and network planning software. The network will go into commercial operation by fall 2004.

"The launch of the GSM network in the Sverdlovsk region is a key project for USI in 2004. The Sverdlovsk region is the main region of our company’s activities and we thus plan to offer, as early as the fall, high-quality mobile services at reasonable prices to its 4.5 million inhabitants. The equipment and software from Siemens will allow USI to provide its future subscribers in the Sverdlovsk region with competitive communication services based on state-of-the-art mobile technologies", explained Vladimir I. Rybakin, Head of Uralsvyazinform. USI, together with six other regional network operators in Russia, belongs to the telecommunications company Svyazinvest, a majority state-run company, and is at present the clear market leader in the Urals with 1.6 million mobile subscribers.

"We are pleased with this order to be growing into one of Uralsvyazinform's biggest suppliers", said Christoph Caselitz, Head of the Networks Division at Siemens mobile. "Our task is now to intensify our collaboration with Uralsvyazinform through excellent performance, and ensure that the letter of intent is followed successively by further concrete orders."

Uralsvyazinform is the biggest operator of telecommunications services and the leading internet provider in the Urals region. The company is active in eight subjects of the Russian Federation covering a territory of 1.9 million square km and a population of 15.5 million (the Kurgan, Perm, Sverdlovsk, Tyumen and Tschelyabinsk regions, and the Komi-Perm, Khanty-Mansijsk and Jamal-Nenentsk Autonomous Districts). As of 1 August 2004 the company now serves 3.2 million subscribers of fixed networks and 1.6 million subscribers of mobile networks, occupying 90 percent on the local market for telecom services, 76 percent for long-distance communications, 45 percent for mobile communications, and 41 percent for internet services. In 2003, OAO "Uralsvyazinform" achieved earnings of 22 billion rubles and net income of 1.2 billion rubles. The capitalization of the company is 1.2 billion USD.

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Siemens Mobile