voipo3g to be driven by both wireless carriers and independent

Published November 14th, 2007 - 11:47 GMT

voipo3g to be driven by both wireless carriers and independent

A new research study from Disruptive Analysis shows that evolution of mobile VoIP will rapidly eclipse voice over WiFi and become a mainstream form of communication.  

 The analystfirm predicts that the number of VoIPo3G users could grow from virtually zero in 2007 to over 250m by the end of 2012. This is comfortably in
excess of the expected number of FMC users with dual-mode
VoWLAN/cellular phones.

The report demonstrates that it will be the operators themselves which
will be mainly responsible for the push towards VoIP being carried over
cellular networks.  Carriers  will become increasingly attracted to
VoIPo3G because it will enable them to fit more phone calls into their
scarce spectrum allocations, reduce operating expenses by combining
fixed and mobile core networks, and launch new services like
push-to-talk and voice-integrated "mashups". VoIPo3G also fits well with
the move towards femtocells.  Future generations of wireless technology
- 3GPP LTE (Long Term Evolution), 3GPP2 UMB(Ultra Mobile Broadband),
WiMAX - are "all-IP", so unless mobile operators continue to run
separate voice networks in parallel, they will inevitably transition to
VoIP at some point.

However, because these new radio technologies are three to five years
away from mainstream deployment - what happens in the meantime will
provide the major disruption to operator business models.   Some
independent VoIP players are already exploiting the fact that today's 3G
networks can already support VoIP, putting dedicated software on
smartphones, exploiting open operating systems, flat-rate data plans and
features like "naked SIP" and built-in VoIP capability. These are linked
to competitive 'over the top' phone or IM services via a mobile Internet

At the same time, there is an increasing trend of carriers marketing 3G
modems for PCs - not just for mobile computing, but also to compete with
home DSL/cable broadband offerings. Laptop users expect to be able to
use their normal broadband applications over 3G, including voice-based
ones like Skype. Some operators are even offering their own VoIP
software for PCs with wireless broadband.

The end-result of the push towards VoIPo3G is that by 2012, most VoIPo3G
users will be using mobile carriers' own standards-based VoIP
capabilities, over the new, advanced 3G+ networks. However, a
significant minority of about 60m will be using independent or
Internet-based solutions - many actually operated in partnership with
carriers or retailers.

Dean Bubley, author of the report and founder of Disruptive Analysis,
comments: "3G networks are increasingly capable of supporting VoIP, for
both traditional mobile operators and independent Internet-based VoIP
challengers. But while CDMA operators will benefit from VoIP being
'designed-in' to their newest networks, 3GPP / HSPA operators will have
to wait for several years - a window of opportunity which will be
exploited by the 'over the top' players. Rather than competing head-on,
partnership models have the potential to create win-win propositions"

The report, "VoIPo3G Business Models", is available from Disruptive
Analysis from today. It is based on a huge research effort spanning
hundreds of interviews and meetings, and contains extensive market
forecasts, industry commentary & analysis and company profiles.

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