GENEVA Wireless industry pioneer Martin Cooper called for a fundamental change in the way the industry offers customers multimedia and broadband, saying the current versions of 3G will just not work.
Speaking at a panel session at the Telecom World show here, Cooper said any new model must start with applications, then operators must create and refine the network technologies most appropriate for delivering optimized applications.
Cooper, chairman and CEO of ArrayComm Inc., is widely credited with inventing the first cellular phone during his time at Motorola Inc.
"We are going to have to change fundamentally. For how long will the public put up with the mediocre service they are provided now capable of just voice and SMA, but forever being promised much, much more."
Cooper said "it is unrealistic to expect we will end up with just one solution for third generation [mbile phones]. There will a number of competing versions."
Not surprisingly, he suggested the most practical and economic way to deliver high data-rate Internet access to mobile devices, at at least 1Mbit/s, was to deploy adaptive array antennas such as those being developed by ArrayComm and undergoing international trials.
"UMTS, or wideband CDMA in its present [form], will never be able to deliver this vision," Copper said. Changes are need that must start by offering the kind of theoretical data rates contemplated in the early stages of defining 3G. Otherwise, "we may never have a next-generation mobile service."
"Regulators have to buy into this vision of an applications led business model and become more enlightened," he added.
Trials now under way in Sydney, Australia, for example, following the award of four licenses, are developing applications and offering data access at 1Mbit/s downstream and 384kbit/s upstream using unpaired spectrum. ArrayComm's iBurst antenna technology is used by one of consortia licensees led by Personal Broadband Australia.
The trial uses just six basestations and will offer high data-rate services for no more than the cost of dial-up access when the service starts before the end of the year.
"The business model for the future is a whole bunch of people developing applications and using such novel technologies. That's how things will happen," concluded Cooper.