Next-gen applications in the 4G world

When it comes to 4G and the applications that will ride on it, speed sells. "It's just about broadband access to whatever you want. It's not an application but it's more of a business model that we're going to get people access to the real Internet," said Peter Jarich, research director of Current Analysis. Of course the one immediate application that will take obvious advantage of a broader pipe is video. You can do video with 3G, and you can do a pretty good job with some of the more advanced HSPA systems, but 4G promises speeds that can make it a game-changing app that subscribers will pay more to get. "The real benefit is for real-time streaming video," said Stuart Little, director of corporate marketing for Harris Stratex. "That's the whole YouTube phenomenon; watching online videos through news feeds or sports."

The big key for any successful application is "finding a product that catches the imagination of the folks who don't mind spending their money on something new," said Jim Orr, principal network architect at Fujitsu, suggesting a further take on the video application. "Within a few years a DVR networked to the outside world with various wireless technologies will be available" making it possible to receive information in moving vehicles. "It is highly likely that each owner will be able to request video content either from a public or home service so their content will move with them. "Moving content at high speeds is a killer ap because "there is no one application that will drive monetization of the 4G world," said Chris Pearson, president/senior operating officer of 3G Americas. Instead, by providing broadband speeds to mobile devices 4G will drive "hyper-connectivity" for multiple applications, including, of course, interactive gaming.

"They're going to have such tremendous download speeds with 4G it doesn't make much sense to be developing all these standards and these massive download speeds just to do email and talk," concluded Little. 

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