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Prototype CDMA/Wi-Fi handset from Kyocera at CTIA
Posted: 05-Apr-2006 [Source: Kyocera]

[A dual-mode CMDA/WiFi prototype BREW-based handset from Kyocera includes integrated access to Boingo's roaming network.]

CTIA, Las Vegas -- Kyocera Wireless Corp. and Boingo Wireless Inc., today announced the demonstration of a prototype Kyocera BREW-based dual-mode Wi-Fi/CDMA handset with integrated Boingo public Wi-Fi roaming at the CTIA Wireless 2006 trade show in Las Vegas, addressing the growing market for WLAN-enabled handsets.

The prototype shows the ease with which global public Wi-Fi access can be integrated into the service offerings of operators and mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) looking for a feature-rich dual-mode phone. Dual-mode CDMA/Wi-Fi devices leverage the ubiquity of wide-area 3G networks and the high-performance and cost savings of local-area Wi-Fi networks. In a real-world setting, network operators and MVNOs can optimize the dual-mode handset's application suite to automatically choose the appropriate mode, based on environmental and performance preferences.

Dual-mode phones represent the convergence of 3G cellular services and Wi-Fi hot spot networks. The addition of Wi-Fi to a handset enhances cellular network connectivity by offloading high-bandwidth applications in hot spots where the price/performance ratio of Wi-Fi can be less than half that of cellular services. This is especially attractive to MVNOs who do not own their own networks and must purchase cellular access at the prevailing market rates.

Other applications for dual-mode handsets include connectivity when outside of service areas. When bundled with VoIP software, the dual-mode handset can send and receive calls in foreign countries where local GSM service is incompatible with the phone's core CDMA technology. Wi-Fi connectivity -- in homes, offices, and public hot spots -- also improves in-building connectivity and coverage where the cellular network signal is weak or unavailable.

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