"Philips Intros UMA-Friendly Design
By Suzanne Deffree -- Electronic News, 3/14/2005
Royal Philips Electronics today announced a complete Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) semiconductor reference design allowing a mobile phone that accesses GSM and GPRS services through traditional cellular networks to automatically switch over to WLAN access points.
"If you have a UMA-enabled mobile phone, when you come home the phone will not work on GSM, but on wireless LAN," noted Ton van Kampen, VP of business innovations, communications, Philips Semiconductors. "In the phone is not only GSM circuitry, there is wireless LAN circuitry. When you come home, this wireless LAN circuitry recognizes an access point in your house, to which your phone is registered."
Kampen said that even during a GSM call, you will automatically switch over to a wireless LAN link via broadband if you enter the registered Wi-Fi area.
"For an end user, it is nice because when he comes home he can continue to use his mobile phone and have all the features, even browsing. That is possible today, but quite often the connection is not so good. When you do it via Wi-Fi at home, it will work optimally. Secondly, the cost will be lower because as soon as you cross over to your wireless LAN, the operator will give you a lower rate," the VP said, noting that the wireless LAN spectrum is free.
The operator, Kampen said, profits by being able to accommodate more users. "There's more space left. There can be many more subscribers on the same network than is possible today. It's an immediate extra profit for the operator."
Philips said it is working closely with Alcatel, a provider of communications solutions, on interoperability tests between UMA handsets based on the Philips Nexperia UMA reference design and the Alcatel 5020 Spatial Atrium mobile call server/softswitch, which extends customer roaming capabilities as they switch between cellular networks and WLAN access points.
Philips' UMA reference design, introduced at the CTIA show in New Orleans, is based on its Nexperia cellular system solution 6120 and includes what the company claims is the industry's lowest-power 802.11g WLAN system-in-a-package (SiP) for connections to WLAN access points. The UMA switching capability is based on software from Kineto Wireless.
The UMA reference design is available now. The UMA client software for the Nexperia platform is available immediately from Kineto."http://www.tomshardware.com/hardnews/20 ... 52412.html