The only thing truly unusual at last week’s Mobile Asia Congress was the fury of delegates over the $4,200 entry fee.
More than a few people stayed away from the event, not willing to fork out four times the average Hong Kong monthly wage for the chance to stroll the booths or hear the GSMA’s latest plan to save the world.
This time the association was all about green – it unveiled a “green manifesto” with the goal of keeping industry carbon emissions flat until 2020, though it didn’t say how this would happen.
Nothing new there. The rest was 2009 business as usual: smartphones, LTE, and fretting about the “dumb-pipe” future.
Also in tune with year to date, the big Chinese firms China Mobile, Huawei and ZTE took center stage. Not just because it was their home turf but because the industry is moving their way.
China Mobile boss Wang Jianzhou reminded us he’d won backing from chip, handset and network vendors to make combined TD- and FD-LTE chipsets from the get-go, ensuring compatibility with TD-SCDMA gear – a boost to roamers and also the likelihood of next-gen TD becoming a global standard.
With China’s 3G rollout now at full steam – in contrast to the shrunken US and EU investment – the Chinese industry is going to dominate global capex for the next two or three years. They can write their own ticket – and they pretty much have.