Wireless Web Digest: The Smartphone Cometh

In this edition of the Wireless Web Digest: Netgear Sees a Successful IPO Samsung Gets Competition for a U.S. Smartphone NTT DoCoMo Pushes a Wireless LAN Interface

IDC: Q2 Handset Growth Up Sharply from New Features

Mobile phones are just about the only type of hardware still growing at a double-digit pace, and the future for the market continues to look bright as manufacturers bring data applications into voice handsets, according to research released Thursday by IDC. Worldwide shipments of mobile phones grew 19.2 percent in the second quarter of 2003, as compared to the second quarter of 2002, IDC said in a release. A total of 118 million units were shipped, led by Nokia Corp.s 40.9 million units. IDC cited the rise in shipments of phones with color screens and digital cameras as one of the reasons for the continued strength of the market.

Read the full story on: InfoWorld

Centralized Wireless LAN Interface Proposed

A multivendor consortium, led by NTT DoCoMo and Airespace, has put before the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) a proposal for a standardized interface between wireless LAN access points and switches in centralized WLAN architectures. If successful, the Lightweight Access Point Protocol (LWAPP) will fundamentally alter WLAN component design and deployment business models, while leveling the playing field for a plethora of centralized WLAN vendors vying for a toehold in a market dominated by Cisco Systems Inc. LWAPP is intended to make the access points (APs) from the myriad vendors now deploying centralized architectures interoperable. "The proposal is the closest thing to a united front these startups have against Cisco," said Max Smetannikov, an analyst for networks and infrastructure at the451, which focuses on disruptive technologies. "Im sure that anyone whos in the Wi-Fi space is watching this closely because it affects a lot of people," he said.

Read the full story on: CommsDesign

Solomon Ships Worlds First USB-Interface GPRS Modem

Taiwan-based Solomon Technology recently launched the worlds first GPRS modem that supports the USB 1.1 interface. The Class 8 (4 downlink/1 uplink) Solomon SCMi250u GPRS modem is built upon Motorolas i.250 Innovative Convergence platform and offers a maximum data rate of 64 Kbps. According to Solomon, Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) and Taiwan Cellular Corporation (TCC), two leading mobile phone service providers in Taiwan, have been offering wireless date communication services bundling its GPRS modem. Both CHT and TCC will assign a new SIM card for customers who subscribe the data services.

Read the full story on: DigiTimes

Second Microsoft-Enabled Smart Phone Possible in U.S.

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. may not be the only company looking to sell a mobile phone using Microsoft Corp.s software in the United States; it appears Taiwanese manufacturer Chi Mei Communication Systems Inc. is also planning to release a Microsoft Smartphone device. Pictures and details of the device were available on the Federal Communications Commission Web site. The flip-style phone features GSM/GPRS network support and Microsofts Smartphone operating system. Chi Mei did not immediately return requests for comment. It is unclear when the device will be available and which carrier will sell it.

Read the full story on: RCR Wireless News

Netgear Stock Surges 26 Percent in Debut

Netgear Inc., a developer of networking and wireless gear for small businesses and consumers, saw its shares surge 26 percent in the companys debut on Wall Street. The company, which was profitable in the quarter ended March 31, had originally intended to price its shares around $10-12, but ended up pricing them at $14, due to strong demand. On Thursday, shares closed at $17.69, after hitting a session high of $19.25.

Read the full story on: Mercury News