Kanwalinder Singh, Senior Vice President of Qualcomm Inc and president of Qualcomm India and South Asia and Mr. Jung Soo Shin, President & CEO Samsung South West Asia HQ at the launch of the Samsung OMH handset Mpower 699 in Kolkata last week
India is global launchpad for 'open' CDMA handsets
No more 'lock in' to one service provder.
Samsung has launched the world’s first Open Market Handset ( OMH) mobile phone, in the Indian market. The Mpower 699, comes with a 1.3MP Camera with video recording and multimedia features like audio player, video player and stereo FM radio. The new handset also features an advanced Mobile Tracker, dedicated camera key, and a 2GB MicroSD card. The OMH compliant Samsung Mpower 699 costs Rs 7100.
OMH is an initiative of the world’s CDMA service providers, developers and manufacturers to create an open standard from CDMA phones which does not have any operator- specific information that might lock in buyers of handsets to one service provider. Samsung received cooperation from CDMA technology developer Qualcomm in creating the OMH handset .India is the second largest wireless market after China and the second largest CDMA market after the U.S. It also saw the first successful trial last year, of OMH proof of concept, any where in the world, in which both Indian CDMA operators, Reliance and Tata cooperated.
“This OMH launch represents a paradigm shift in the dynamics of the CDMA ecosystem with consumers now having the flexibility to choose an operator at their will at any point in time. OMH empowers a CDMA customer as never before and will serve to fuel the growth in the CDMA handset market”, said Jung Soo Shin, President & CEO, Samsung South West Asia at the launch event in Kolkata last week.
“With currently more than 100 million CDMA subscribers, we expect OMH to play a key role in driving the growth of CDMA in India”, said Kanwalinder Singh, Senior Vice President of Qualcomm Inc and president of Qualcomm India and South Asia.
Tech Note: CDG and OMH
The CDMA Development Group (CDG), founded in December 1993, is an international consortium of CDMA service providers and manufacturers, application developers and content providers who have joined together to lead the adoption and evolution of 3G CDMA wireless systems around the world.
The CDG is comprised of CDMA service providers and manufacturers, application developers and content providers.
TheOpen Market Handset(OMH) initiative is a strategic effort of the CDG to benefit the CDMA ecosystem by enablingopendistribution ofhandsetsacross networks without any operator specific information and a wide range of full-featured CDMA devices that can be freely used across OMH compliant operator networks. The OMH Special Interest Group (SIG) was formed in January of 2008 .
In May, 2008, the CDMA Development Group (CDG) today announced the successful conclusion of Open Market Handset (OMH) proof of concept trials in cooperation with Reliance Communications and TATA Indicom in India. Open Market Handsets enable both operator-specific configuration information and subscriber-specific provisioning information to be moved from the handset’s non-volatile (NV) memory into a next-generation Removable User Identity Module (R-UIM) or smartcard. By doing so, the handset becomes a generic device that can be sold on the “open market” and used in multiple operator networks.008 to lead the OMH initiative.
This means freedom from operator-bundled handsets – consumers can now pick their choice from a wide range of handsets and select the operator of their choice. Moreover, they can change the handset or operator at any point of time as easily as they would with a GSM connection.
The CDMA community will be providing better handsets and smart phones to give more choice to Indian consumers, as CDMA looks to challenge GSM s popularity in the Indian market.
Data transmission has traditionally been CDMA s advantage over GSM. Hence CDG is betting big on smart phones, which are meant for data-intensive activities like web-browsing, emails, etc.
CDMA handsets from OEMs who have committed to the Open Market Handsets (OHM) initiative will be available at retail stores across the country. Consumers can buy their choice of handset and then select services from the CDMA operators.