You can kiss 3G Americas good-bye, because that’s history. But the organization lives on, only with a new name – 4G Americas – which better reflects where the industry is headed.
Chris Pearson, president of 4G Americas, which also debuts a new logo and website today, says the name change was done as a reflection of the industry’s move to mobile broadband and reflects the association’s modified mission and objectives to address the changing landscape of the wireless industry.
Pearson didn’t say exactly when the organization’s Board of Governors made its vote, but it was unanimous. “4G Americas believes all paths will lead to LTE,” he says, adding that will be the case for both FDD and TDD.
4G Americas has an open application process, so it is possible the new direction will attract more members but that is not why the organization decided to make the change, according to Pearson.
Currently, the 4G Americas Board of Governors consists of 18 vendors and operators: Alcatel-Lucent, América Móvil, Andrew Solutions, AT&T, Cable & Wireless, Ericsson, Gemalto, HP, Huawei, Motorola, Nokia Siemens Networks, Openwave, Powerwave, Qualcomm, Research In Motion (RIM), Rogers, T-Mobile USA and Telefónica.
In the United States, Clearwire and Sprint advertise 4G services and Verizon Wireless will be launching LTE this year, but their paths to 4G have been by way of WiMAX and CDMA/EV-DO, not the GSM camp that the 3G Americas organization historically has represented. Clearwire, however, is exploring how it might move to LTE.
In past interviews, Pearson has made a point of saying that 3G still has a lot of life left in it, and that hasn’t changed. “We’re not turning our backs on 3G,” he says. “We will continue to address opportunities in 2G and 3G.”
3G Americas was founded eight years ago, when the aggregate market share for the GSM family of products in North America, South America and Latin America was 8 percent to 10 percent; now, it’s more like 75 percent.
Filed Under: Industry regulations