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Title Wibro
Date 2009-03-28 Read 1763
WiBro is the acronym for Wireless Broadband Internet, and refers to a service which enables a high-speed wireless Internet connection at any time and any place, whether stationary or mobile. WiBro has the advantages of both mobile communications and wireless LAN, and was developed by the Ministry of Information and Communication, the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute, the Telecommunications Technology Association, and WiBro-related companies (KT, SKT, Samsung Electronics, Posdata).
Technologically, WiBro shares the same specifications as Mobile WiMax, and was approved as the IEEE 802.16e standard in December 2005. WiBro was designated as the 6th 3G international standard by the ITU in October 2007. The following is a comparison of WiBro with other 3G technologies.
 
 
 
On the other hand, the application of 3G standards to WiBro means that it will become superior in the competition involved in the selection of the IMT-Advanced 4G Technology Standards by the ITU in 2010.

The examination of WiBro in Korea commenced when the 2.3GHz frequency that was used for WLL (Wireless Local Loop) was redistributed to be used for mobile Internet access in October 2002. WiBro came to prominence in June 2004 when the Telecommunications Technology Association confirmed its stage 1 standard.

In January 2005, KT, SK Telecom, and Hanaro Telecom (currently SK Broadband) were selected as WiBro companies. Subsequently, Hanaro Telecom relinquished its right to operate WiBro, but KT and SK Telecom launched commercial WiBro services in certain areas in the metropolitan area of Seoul for the first time in the world in June 2006.
Currently, WiBro services in Korea are restricted, as its service coverage is only in Seoul and areas around it, and cannot be seen as having entered a phase of popularization. However, a high growth potential is expected, as WiBro companies, including KT and SK Telecom, have announced their intention to expand the WiBro service coverage.
In the case of KT, which is most active in WiBro services, the number of its WiBro service subscribers reached 100,000 in October 2007, and it plans to acquire 400,000 subscribers by the end of 2008.
 

Korea's main WiBro-related companies are service providers KT and SK Telecom, and equipment manufacturers Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, and Posdata. Samsung Electronics and Posdata are particularly ahead in the development of base stations, control stations, and core chips.

 
 
 
Main issues regarding the WiBro business are wireless VoIP and 4G standard selection.
 
WiBro-based VoIP services are expected to have a tremendous influence on the market in terms of consumer values and effects related to the substitution of it for conventional mobile communications services. The possibility of the provision of VoIP services is also a core element that will determine whether WiBro can become established as the next-generation mobile communications technology and a popularized service.
 
 
 
WiBro-based wireless VoIP services can be achieved even with the current level of technology, but they cannot be commercialized yet due to non-technological reasons such as the possibility of service infringement, etc. However, WiBro voice calling takes place based on IP, so it is more advantageous in terms of prices when compared to conventional mobile communications. It has also been analyzed as more advantageous than mobile communications for additional services such as video calling, etc.
In relation to this matter, the Korea Communications Commission is examining support policies such as the granting of numbers to WiBro voice calling services.
 
The selection of WiBro as the 3G International Standard in October 2007 brought about a technological foundation for leading the 4G market. As the world's communications technology is evolving to be IP-based, WiBro is AII-IP-based and seen as closer to the 4G standard than the WCDMA LTE (Long-Term Evolution), with which it competes.
 
 
Moreover, when it comes to wireless connection technology, WiBro can achieve the best data transmission speed by applying the OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access)-based smart antenna technology and MIMO (Multiple Input Output) technology, which makes it superior to 3G LTE in terms of performance based on costs of establishment. It is also understood as having the most superior competitive power as a business model when equipped with VoIP voice.
Terminals that support WiBro networks are external WiBro connection devices such as PCMCIA, USB, and PC cards, as well as PDAs, UMPCs and laptop computers with an internal WiBro chip. WiBro phones and smart phones, which are integrated with a mobile phone, as well as specialized terminals for games, are being released.
 
 
 
In the future, mobile phone terminals, including the smart phone, are expected to be the terminals mainly used on the market. Such mobile phone terminals are expected to become smaller and more efficient, and their various functions, including multimedia processing, display, battery, low-power CPU, and memory, are expected to be improved so that a wide range of application programs can be utilized.
Korea's main WiBro terminal manufacturers are Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, Posdata, and ReignCom.
 
WiBro is an international standard technology developed by Korean research institutes and businesses, and the economic effects of its overseas advancement are also substantial. WiBro's international technology title is Mobile WiMax, and Ovum, the international IT research institute, estimates the number of Mobile WiMax subscribers to reach 210 million by 2011.
Currently, 50-something companies of 40-something countries, including the U.S., Japan, and Russia, are known to have selected the WiBro technology, or are scheduled to. In relation to this matter, the United States' Sprint Nextel commenced full-scale commercialization of Mobile WiMax (WiBro) in Baltimore in October 2008.
Samsung Electronics participated in the aforementioned commercialization as a partner, and Sprint Nextel is scheduled to establish approximately 25,000 base stations within the U.S. by 2010 and provide coverage for the entire U.S. population of 140 million.
In Japan, UQ Communications, established through joint investment by KDDI and 6 other companies, is preparing to launch. UQ Communications will commence commercialization in Tokyo and Osaka halfway through 2009.
On the other hand, KT has launched its WiBro operation in Uzbekistan in October 2008 through the Uzbekistani company Super-iMAX, and Russia's Scartel is preparing the commercialization of WiBro in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
In addition, Singapore, Venezuela, and Saudi Arabia have launch commercialized WiBro services, and Kuwait, Kazakhstan, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, and Brazil are also examining the commercialization of WiBro.
 
 
 
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