SAGIA PROMOTES DIGITAL WIRELESS TECHNOLOGY WITH QUALCOMM

Published December 6th, 2005 - 11:54 GMT

The Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) hosted a vocational seminar on digital wireless technology with QUALCOMM Incorporated (Nasdaq: QCOM) for key executives and managers from SAGIA, STC, Saudi Communications Development Company and DevCorp International BSC©. SAGIA welcomed the QUALCOMM team of international managers and engineers from Italy, Singapore and the US, lead by Luigi Gasparollo, Vice-President for Development for the MENA Region, QUALCOMM Europe.

QUALCOMM is a leading developer and innovator of Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) and other advanced wireless technologies. Worldwide, QUALCOMM's extensive patent portfolio boasts more than 3,000 United States patents and patent applications for CDMA and other technologies.

The seminar was facilitated by the Saudi Communications Development Company, a local telecommunications incubator, which has fostered a relationship with QUALCOMM over the last five years.

The two-day seminar focused on CDMA technology and its role in enhancing the use of low-frequency broadband spectrum for GSM. QUALCOMM develops its technologies and solutions for the purpose of enabling key participants in the wireless value chain to ultimately enable consumers, professionals and government entities who benefit from the wireless industry.

In keeping with the country’s investment strategy released last year, SAGIA has been working with global and local technology players to determine what type of strategic relationships can be formed to the mutual benefit of Saudi Arabia and the business community, and fulfill its potential to become a regional ICT player.

The size of the ICT market in Saudi Arabia today is over $8 billion, with over $250 billion expected in the next 20 years and the country is recipient to about 40% of the information technology equipment sold at present in the Middle East.

The major stimulants to investment in the ICT services are Saudi Arabia’s youthful population, an annual telecommunications spending per capita at $330 (greater than that of Turkey, Syria, Iran, Algeria, Egypt, Morocco, Sudan, Yemen, and Pakistan combined), and state-of-the-art infrastructures in the region rendering Saudi Arabia one of the best countries in the region with excellent communications network.

Through fostering information exchange- such as with QUALCOMM- SAGIA aims to disseminate the knowledge of technologies that create efficiency for the public and private sector to build wider information based society. Such strategic platforms are invaluable to further educate and develop the private sector’s strengths.

In addition, the QUALCOMM seminar presentations elaborated on how UMTS is becoming the new standard technology adopted by GSM operators to move to the Third Generation Networks and how CDMA technology has become a standard for Wireless Local loops applications. The team presented a roadmap on the chipset for UMTS phones manufactured by QUALCOMM, starting from HSDPA to new exiting services.

QUALCOMM also presented case-studies of networks and services activations for some of the world’s largest operators such as Vodafone, Orange, Hutchison, TMobile, Cingular, Telefonica and TIM among others.

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