While 16 of the largest mobile operators and technology providers have banded together to support the worldwide roll out of 3G mobile broadband across a diverse range of products, Nokia and Intel (an ardent supporter of WiMAX) were notable absentees.
The initiative, unimaginatively labelled "Mobile Broadband", has a staggering US$1 billion promotional budget which will be provided by the founding members--this includes the 3 Group, AsusTek Computer, Dell, Ericsson, Gemalto, Lenovo, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Telecom Italia Mobile, TeliaSonera, T-Mobile, Toshiba and Vodafone.
Little has been made public as to where this enormous promotional budget might be spent, although the first devices, a range of laptops bearing the new Mobile Broadband logo, will appear before Christmas.
The apparent objective of this new GSMA-led group is to try and make 3G connectivity as unobtrusive and as simple as possible, with the ultimate goal of having an instantaneous connection. "There is a lot of alphabet soup coming around the corner," said Ton Brand of the GSMA. "Whether it's HSPA, evolved HSPA or LTE, we wanted one single brand that would get consumers' attention."
The GSMA's initiative will be expanded to include USB dongles, and other devices with embedded 3G modules like cameras, MP3 players and even refrigerators.
Intel, Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks Collaborate on Global WiMAX Interoperability. WiMAX story
Intel: WiMAX/WiFi chip coming in ultramobile PCs. Intel story