RELEASE: Wireless Broadband subs to hit 1M by 2010

Wireless Broadband and Mobile Broadband to reach One Million Subscribers by 2010, Predicts IDC NORTH SYDNEY, November 13th, 2006 - IDC's latest research in the rapidly growing Australian Wireless Broadband (WBB) and Mobile Broadband (MBB) markets finds that they were injected with much needed evolutionary stimulus in 2005. The main reasons for this were the ratification of WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) 802.16e for wireless technologies, and the arrival of ubiquitous 3G (Third Generation) networks for mobile (cellular) services. "Picking a winner between wireless broadband and mobile broadband services will be a neck-and-neck call," says Jerson Yau, IDC Australia Research Analyst for Wireless and Mobility. He adds, "Both WiMAX and cellular technologies are poised to experience a renaissance in the very near future - provided conditions are favourable - and the onus will initially be placed on service providers to help both business users and consumers choose the most appropriate technology for their needs." IDC's study, titled "Australia Wireless and Mobile Broadband 2006-2010 Forecast and Analysis: Two Princes" explores the advantages, positioning, appeal, and uptake of WBB and MBB technologies and their services. The interplay between both these technologies will greatly spur their development and prominence over the forecast period. Key user groups, - namely business users and consumers - can be expected to polarise the WBB and MBB camps to a great extent. Key IDC findings include: # In 2005, the rapidly emerging WBB market had over 81 thousand subscribers, outpacing the MBB market which garnered almost 62 thousand subscribers. Service revenues for WBB and MBB combined, surpassed A$100 million. # In 2006, the impact of MBB began to pose a serious threat to WBB services as high throughput and low latency 3.5G upgrades were rapidly deployed across existing 3G networks. The punctuated development of 3.5G technology and ease of upgrading the network will continue to garner substantial consumer mindshare due to its positioning and value added services. # Despite the rapid deployments and punctuated developments of both WBB and MBB services, there continues to be a great deal of work in both these camps for the industry bodies and stakeholders to further promote the roadmaps and benefits of implementing their respective technologies. In addition they can populate the marketplace with business-grade and consumer-centric devices. # Overall, WBB and MBB stakeholders should incentivise users to adopt their respective services, as well as adopt an aggressive stance in promoting their services against fixed line alternatives. WBB stakeholders in particular are also encouraged to strengthen their business models, along with their technology standards. MBB stakeholders are advised to make their services more accessible to users, and to bring on the plethora of devices and services that showcase their advanced networks.