Motorola's dual-mode phone allows users more control

Motorola used the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show to unveil a new Motorola Residential Seamless Mobility Gateway (RSG). The point: It takes WiFi-to-cellular handover control out of the hands of the carrier and gives it to the consumer. The company's RSG family includes an 802.11b/g wireless AP, a four-port router and a built-in VoIP adapter. When used with a dual-mode handset, these will allow the hotspot to seamlessly transfer voice calls between the home WLAN and the cellular network.

This is good news for the consumer, and also good news for the stalled handset market. The dual-mode handset market showed much promise last year, but growth has been slower than anticipated because of the tight control cellular network operators exercise over the handover exchange process. Lecturers in universities' business classes may talk glowingly about how cellular operators should view a WiFi service as complementary to their business, but cellular operators would rather count the call-minute revenue they lose than sing the praise of convergence.

RSG gateway comes with built-in intelligence which automatically directs the call to the best available network or service option by dialing a number, allowing consumers to use their home wireless network to compensate for cellular service dead-spots within their home. The Motorola RSG line has two products--the RSG2500, expected in winter 2006, and the RSG3500, expected in summer 2006. The latter will be able to power two lines of primary VoIP telephone service within the home.

For more on Motorola's latest phone:
- see this press release

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