A major theme coming out of CTIA Wireless in New Orleans this week is mobile payments. This theme manifested itself on Monday with two major announcements by MasterCard. The two announcements included results from a mobile payments readiness index produced by MasterCard, as well as the launch of PayPass wallet services.
On Tuesday at CTIA Wireless, the Small Cell Forum, an independent industry and operator association that supports small cell deployment, released a whitepaper outlining the opportunities and challenges facing public access 3G small cell deployments. The paper found that public access small cells could play a key role in providing additional mobile coverage, capacity and new services in both urban and rural areas.
On Monday at CTIA Wireless in New Orleans, the GSMA announced that it has been working with three major Canadian operators - Bell Mobility, Rogers Communications and TELUS, to launch its OneAPI Gateway. The gateway offers application developers a way to connect to and use a standard set of APIs (application programming interfaces) available from the three major Canadian Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).
Like the Interstate Highway system in the 1950s, building out a national LTE infrastructure in the U.S. is a major undertaking. The largest challenges in building out an LTE network consider of planning, staging, and deploying the technology at maximum speed and with minimal costs. Mobile operators are in a tight race to build out LTE networks in the U.S. as quickly and cost-effectively as possible, and backhaul is a key component of the job.
A new iGR study shows that demand for microwave backhaul is forecast to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 68% from 2011 to 2016, but that the issues associated with the technology could significantly slow down deployment.
On Thursday, SK Telecom announced a deal with Ericsson to extend its LTE network. According to SK Telecom, demand for LTE services in South Korea has increased rapidly since the commercial launch of the technology in the country in July 2011. As of today, SK Telecom provides 2.4 million of its 26 million subscribers with LTE technology.
India's Telecom Commission is seeking clarity from the sector regulator on some of its 2G airwaves auction proposals including the base price, which mobile carriers want to be cut by 80%.
R. Chandrashekhar, the top bureaucrat in the country's telecoms ministry, said the Telecom Commission did not have a view yet if the proposed near 10-fold rise in auction starting price from what carriers had paid in a 2008 sale was "too high."
Accuris Networks, a provider of mobile technology interworking, and Acme Packet, a provider of session delivery network services, on Monday announced a partnership to launch a Wi-Fi Mobile Interworking service, which gives mobile operators a way to extend network coverage and network capacity to Wi-Fi, provide carrier-grade security and offer value-added services even when users offload to Wi-Fi networks.
The top three U.S. telecom carriers, Verizon Communications, AT&T Inc and Sprint Nextel Inc, recently released financial results for the first quarter of 2012. All three carriers reported higher-than-expected financial results for 1Q2012.