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We all knew that it was going to be a wait for 3G mobile phones, but according to projections shown to us today by Citrix, it may be a longer one than anyone thought.

Displaying a lovely multi-coloured map of the world, the VP of product development Keith Turnbull, was drawing attention to the expansion of 3G over time.

The colours corresponded to a percentage of 3G coverage. Purple was 80 to 100 per cent, light blue 60 to 80, green 40 to 60 then yellow, orange and dark blue for nuffing.

However, by 2003 - when, we've been led to believe, we'll all be walking around watching the latest Hollywood blockbuster on our phone - Europe and Scandinavia are still only in the 40 to 60 per cent bracket. And this, apart from Japan alone, is the highest percentage in the world. The US and Australia get a measly 0 to 20 per cent and Africa, Asia, Central and South America nothing at all. That's no good, you say.

Well, what about by 2007? Finally Europe, Scandinavia and Japan hit the top bracket, the States is still lagging with 20 to 40 per cent, Canada, South America , Asia and Australia are working on a shoddy 0 to 20 per cent and poor old Central America and Africa still have absolutely nothing.

Makes all the hype - not to mention the billions spent on licences - look a bit silly, don't it?

Not that this will worry Citrix (in fact, straight-talking Turnbull told us he never puts much stock in projections - quite right, Keith, quite right) because its looking to lead the market with its ASP protocol ICA.

Most of the big boys have already signed Citrix or spoken vaguely about being in talks, so Citrix can afford to do a Cisco - sell all the hyped-up, caffeine-ridden optimists the gear and sit laughing with the bank manager while his underlings shut the newly formed companies down. ®

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