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The Mobile Connection: Wireless Broadband CTIA-The Wireless Association® Two Central Points Wireless is a Competitor in the Broadband Marketplace Wireless, cable, telephone all go into the Internet cloud Consumers are served by product differentiation The Internet

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The Mobile Connection:

Wireless Broadband

CTIA-The Wireless Association®

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Two Central Points

  • Wireless is a Competitor in the Broadband Marketplace

    • Wireless, cable, telephone all go into the Internet cloud

  • Consumers are served by product differentiation

The Internet

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The Basics of the Mobile Ecosystem

  • Underlying network providers – FCC licensees.

  • Handset and Infrastructure providers – e.g., Sony Ericsson, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, Lucent, Nortel, etc.

  • Third-party content / applications developers and providers, which may include both content generators, and content aggregators.

  • Aggregators combine content, such as news, sports, and other information for provision to end-user customers through carriers and MVNOs.

  • Mobile Virtual Network Operators (“MVNOs”), operating on licensees’ networks but offering consumers their own branded applications and content.

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The U.S. Wireless Story

  • At mid-year 2006, 180 wireless licensees served 219 million customers nationwide – 71% of all Americans. That’s an increase of 110 million customers from year-end 2000.

  • The FCC has found that 98% of Americans live in counties in which three or more licensed wireless service providers offer services, and 94% in counties where four or more licensed wireless providers offer service.

  • Multiple MVNOs also compete in the wireless marketplace, serving approximately 10% of wireless customers.

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Multiple Wireless Licensees Compete Nationwide

Source: FCC 11th CMRS Competition Report

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Competition Between Providers and Technologies

Analog & Digital Standards

1G - Analog Technology Standard

  • AMPS (Advanced Mobile Phone Service)

    2G - Digital Technology Standards

  • TDMA (Time Division Multiple Access) – most being upgraded to GSM

    • Cingular

  • CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access)

    • Verizon Wireless

    • Sprint-Nextel

  • GSM (Group Standard for Mobile)

    • Cingular

    • T-Mobile

  • iDEN (Integrated Digital Enhanced Network) – most being upgraded to CDMA

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Evolving Wireless Technologies –

Where We Are and Where We’re Going

Digital Standards

2.5 to 3G – Next Generation Networks

  • CDMA – CDMA 1X, 1XEVDO (Evolution Data Only)

    • CDMA 1X – up to 144 kbps

    • CDMA EVDO – 400 kbps to 2 Mbps Max (400-700 kbps)


    • GPRS – 144 kbps Max (50-70 kbps) (Global Packet Radio System)

    • EDGE – 384 kbps Max (144 kbps) (Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution)

    • HSDPA – up to 3.6 Mbps – 550 kbps to 1.1 Mbps (High Speed Downlink Packet Access)

    • UMTS / WCDMA – 384 Kbps to 2 Mbps

      4G – The Next Step in High Speed Networks

    • Evolving options, e.g., WiMAX, and further extensions of existing standards

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4G: The Next Phase of Wireless Evolution

  • Sprint Nextel’s 4G WiMAX strategy:

    • Sprint Nextel plans to develop and deploy the first 4G nationwide broadband network beginning in 2007using mobile WiMAX IEEE 802.16e-2005 technology as the standard.

      • “The company's deployment plans target a launch of the advanced wireless broadband services in trial markets by the end of 2007 with plans to deploy a network that reaches as many as 100 million people in 2008. Sprint Nextel plans to expand mobile WiMAX network coverage thereafter.” (Initial markets include Chicago and Washington, DC)

      • “Sprint Nextel is expecting to invest $1 billion in 2007 and between $1.5 billion and $2 billion in 2008 relating to the 4G mobile broadband network.”

      • Aiming to deliver data rates of 2 to 4 Mbps.

Source: Sprint Nextel

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High-Speed Wireless Technology Snapshot

According to the FCC, by the start of 2006:

  • CDMA 1xRTT and/or 1xEV-DO has been launched in at least some portion of counties containing 283 million people, or roughly 99 percent of the U.S. population.

  • GPRS, EDGE, and/or WCDMA/HSDPA has been launched in at least some portion of counties containing 269 million people, or about 94 percent of the U.S. population.

  • Higher speed technologies, EV-DO and WCDMA/HSDPA, are available in counties containing 63 percent and 20 percent of the U.S. population.

Source: FCC 11th CMRS Competition Report

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Next Generation Network Rollout in the United States – Estimated by County

Source: FCC 11th CMRS Competition Report

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Wireless licensees are deploying advanced networks across America – including carriers of all sizes…

  • Verizon Wireless has launched an EVDO-based broadband service that is available in 242 major metro areas in 41 states that are home to more than 200 million people, with average speeds of 400-700 kbps, bursting to 2.0 Mbps. Verizon is now upgrading to EVDO Rev. A in six states, boosting average download speeds to 450-800 kbps, and upload speeds to 300-400 kbps

  • Sprint Nextel’s mobile broadband network reaches more than 200 million people nationwide, in 9,473 communities, offering average download speeds of 400-800 kbps. Its EVDO Rev A network now covers more than 95 million people, boosting upload speeds to 350-500 kbps, and download speeds to 600 kbps-1.4 Mbps. Sprint’s entire mobile broadband network is expected to be upgraded to Rev A by 3Q07

  • Cingular Wireless’ HSDPA-based BroadbandConnect service has been deployed in 33 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia, with average speeds of 400-700 kbps. Customers are able to use 3G in 165 cities, including 73 of the top 100 markets

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Wireless licensees are deploying advanced networks across America – including carriers of all sizes…

  • Alltel’s AxcessSM Broadband service is available in more than 100 markets in 19 states, offering speeds of 400-700 kbps with bursts up to 2.4 Mbps. Alltel’s AxcessSM Mobilink service is available in markets in at least 34 states, offering speeds up to 114 kbps.

  • T-Mobile USA has announced it will spend $2.7 billion by 2008 in building a 3G UMTS/HSDPA network. T-Mobile currently offers mobile Internet access through its GSM/GPRS network, and operates a network of more than 8,000 wireless hotspots in the U.S.

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…making available a wide variety of advanced applications…

  • Alaska Communications offers its ACS Mobile Broadband in Alaska.

  • Alaska DigiTel offers wireless data service in Alaska.

  • Cellular South offers CDMA-based wireless data service in the Southeastern U.S.

  • Dobson Cellular, operating in 16 states, introduced its Signalink™ data service in September 2005.

  • GCI offers GSM-EDGE-based broadband service in Alaska.

  • Midwest Wireless, now owned by Alltel, offers Mobile Wireless Internet service in the Upper Midwest.

  • U.S. Cellular offers its Brew™–based easyedge™ Enhanced Wireless Service in all of its markets.

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…including Mobile Video and Data Services applications…

  • Competing mobile television networks / services now include:

    • MobiTV (offered by Alltel, Cellular South, Cingular, Midwest Wireless, and Sprint Nextel in the U.S., and by Centennial Wireless and Verizon Wireless in Puerto Rico).

    • Modeo (formerly Crown Castle Mobile Media, launching in 30 cities beginning in 2006).

    • V CAST (Verizon Wireless’ continental U.S. offering).

    • Qualcomm / MediaFlo USA’s MediaFloTM System (intended to deliver multimedia content to wireless consumers via existing CDMA1X and UMTS systems, and over Qualcomm’s 700 MHz spectrum).

  • Aloha Partners’ HiwireTM subsidiary also plans to offer Mobile TV using 700 MHz spectrum.

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Wireless is a Competitor in the Broadband Marketplace applications…

  • In the first of 2006, total high-speed lines grew 26%, from 51.2 million to 64.6 million lines, and 59% of all adds were mobile wireless subscriptions(FCC “High-Speed Services for Internet Access,” January, 2007)

  • From June 2005 to June 2006, mobile wireless’ share of total broadband lines rose from 1% to 17% of total broadband lines.(FCC “High-Speed Services for Internet Access” report)

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Broadband Speedometer – Maximum Download Speeds applications…

30 Mbps

30 Mbps

15 Mbps

3.6 Mbps

20 Mbps

3 Mbps

5 Mbps

3 Mbps

2 Mbps

2 Mbps

1.5 Mbps

Not to Scale

384 kbps

768 kbps

144 kbps

144 kbps

56 kbps









Cable Modem








4G Wireless


2.5 G Wireless

3G Wireless

Multiple Sources: Webopedia,, PC Magazine, carriers, ISPs

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Broadband Speedometer – Ranges applications…

Up to 30 Mbps

1-6 Mbps

Up to 15 Mbps

2-4 Mbps

Up to 3 Mbps

Up to 5 Mbps

800k to 1.1Mbps

400-700 kbps

450-800 kbps

Up to 1.5 Mbps

220-384 kbps

Up to 768 kbps

Not to Scale

384 kbps

50-70 kbps

144 kbps

28-45 kbps









Cable Modem








4G Wireless


2.5 G Wireless

3G Wireless

Multiple Sources: Webopedia,, PC Magazine, carriers, ISPs

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Wireless Licensees and MVNOs Compete Across Many Dimensions applications…

  • Wireless service providers compete on the basis of price, features and innovative handsets, including branded and exclusive product and service offerings, such as:

    • Content targeted to specific demographic groups, such as Helio’s mobile MySpace, or

    • Combinations of content and handsets such as Virgin Mobile’s “Txt Tones” which is based on an exclusive deal with a major record label and is available only on Virgin’s Kyocera Cyclops phone, or

    • Other exclusive features, such as the pre-loaded “Virgin Mobile Audio Messaging” service available on the Cyclops phone, and

    • T-Mobile’s converged “[email protected]” offering – combining T-Mobile’s WiFi hotspot access and licensed wireless network service for seamless coverage using a single multimode device.

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How Cell Phones Access the Web applications…

Wireless Access Protocol (WAP)

  • The primary way in which wireless phones and devices initially accessed the Internet and Web is through a protocol called the Wireless Access Protocol (WAP) and its associated markup language, the Wireless Markup Language (WML).

  • WAP is an open technology based on Internet technologies

    • WML is based on XML (extensible markup language) - HTML

  • The three main reason why wireless Internet uses WAP:

    • Transfer speed

    • Size and readability

    • Navigation

  • Smaller screens, more limited colors, slower connection speeds

  • Advanced cell phones and Aircard-enabled laptops now handle HTML

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A Complex Environment Requiring Close Collaboration to Create a Positive Experience

  • There are literally hundreds of handsets and wireless-enabled devices available in the U.S. ( lists 818 handsets and wireless-enabled devices such as PDAs, Blackberries and SmartPhones).

  • Number and variety of devices and players requires carriers and their partners to deal with hundreds of combinations of networks, handsets, messaging platforms, billing systems, and user interfaces to ensure consistent delivery of content to consumers (including games, music and video programming, messages, etc.).

  • Carriers and aggregators need to work together and with third-party content providers to ensure interoperability, quality user experiences, and to block objectionable content (e.g., spam).

  • Carriers are extending CPNI protections to these services through contracts with third-party content providers.

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Carriers and Content Providers Must Work Create a Positive ExperienceTogether to Create Seamless Access for Consumers

  • “Web Video Needs a Middleman to Go Mobile,”

    • “Producers of entertainment content are interested in reaching millions of cellphone users in the U.S. but mostly need to work with wireless-service providers, due to the complex technologies required to deliver video and downloadable songs to handsets. Cellphone operators can reformat and distribute content to millions of subscribers.” (Wall Street Journal, Nov. 8, 2006, p.B-2)

      • “Verizon, YouTube Aim to Bring Web Videos to Cellphones, TV”

        "Though many cellphones provide Internet access, it is difficult for cellphone users to watch video on the Web, in part because it typically isn't formatted for cellphone screens.  But cellular operators such as Verizon Wireless have the technology to bring video, music, and other entertainment options to those screens."  (Wall Street Journal, Nov. 7, 2006, p.A-1)

  • The Mobile Word allows wireless consumers “to watch and listen to your favorite minister's sermons, special events, and Christian related content wherever you are.”

    • How does it work? “Depending on your type of phone and carrier, The Mobile Word service consists of either a BREW, Java, or WAP application that runs on your mobile phone. The Unity In Values network and carrier networks work together to broadcast the video content.” (

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Policies to Further Broadband Adoption Create a Positive Experience

  • Wireless Should Not be Subject to Any Net Neutrality Rules

  • Allow the Market to Continue to Work – Regulate Only in the Event of Market Failure

  • Regulation, If Necessary, Should Occur at the National Level

  • Ensure that Wireless Carriers Have Access to Spectrum

  • Eliminate Regulations that Favor Certain Technologies or Classes of Providers (e.g., Universal Service and Intercarrier Compensation)