Feeds

US trade pressure kills China's home-grown tech

3G angst

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Protectionist US technology companies won a significant lobbying victory through the US Trade Department this week, as the Chinese government pledged not to promote its home-grown TD-SCDMA technology for 3G and not to interfere with royalty negotiations between Chinese carriers and foreign interests.

China has invested heavily in funding its home grown technologies, ranging from microprocessors to communications standards. The implicit threat of its investment in TD-SCDMA, a 3G overlay for GSM networks, was that China reserved the right not to pay royalties. Both major flavors of 3G - Qualcomm's CDMA 1x and the 3GPPP's W-CDMA (known in Europe as UTMS) have royalty strings attached; Qualcomm's is a straight five to six per cent, while the 3GPPP's is more complex, with some of those royalties winding their way back to Qualcomm, of course. The 3G Planning Group of the PRC's State Information Office said it wanted to waive royalties for TD-SCDMA, which was reckoned to be thirty per cent cheaper than W-CDMA.

But the agreement reached this week - which also saw China agree to modify its go-it-alone stance on WAPI 802.11 encryption - drew major concessions with respect to 3G from the PRC.

China has vowed to "support technology neutrality with respect to the adoption of 3G", to allow "telecommunications service providers in China … to make their own choices as to which standard to adopt, depending on their individual needs," and not to get involved in royalty negotiations.

(The US also forced China to take genetically-modified crops in the same agreement; it’s not often you see soybeans and CDMA in the same short press release.)

How closely China will follow the agreement remains to be seen. Qualcomm's first and some of its most important patents expire towards the end of the decade, with LM Ericsson's following. By then, Scandinavian and US manufacturers will be hoping there's enough of a market established to prevent a wholesale switch. On the other hand, the PRC is playing a long game, and has plenty of patience. ®

Related stories

China agrees to drop WAPI wireless sec spec
Trade Wars II: China shuns Qualcomm – no CDMA tax!
EU frets over China's 3G plan
Gang of Four set W-CDMA royalty cap
Patent fees weigh down 3G uptake

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Sea-Me-We 5 construction starts
New sub cable to go live 2016
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
EE coughs to BROKEN data usage metrics BLUNDER that short-changes customers
Carrier apologises for 'inflated' measurements cockup
Comcast: Help, help, FCC. Netflix and pals are EXTORTIONISTS
The others guys are being mean so therefore ... monopoly all good, yeah?
Surprise: if you work from home you need the Internet
Buffer-rage sends Aussies out to experience road rage
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
MOST iPhone strokers SPURN iOS 8: iOS 7 'un-updatening' in 5...4...
Guess they don't like our battery-draining update?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.