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SIPphone community goes bananas over Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.0

Cat out of the bag

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3GSM Windows Mobile 6.0 is out! Well, at the least, the secret of WM 6 is out. Microsoft was today frantically trying to deny its heroic efforts to keep the next generation Windows smartphone hidden from NewsWireless - but the cat was out of the bag even before the Tribune newspaper blew the embargo, because of the enthusiasm in VoIP circles for the new OS.

The actual Windows 6.0 phones won't be selling before June, but working samples will be on view in Barcelona under the normal GSMA dispensation which allows unapproved hardware to work "live" during the show.

The excitement is entirely in the minds of desperate mobile telcos, since the "triple play" scenario is (in the trenchant words of one consultant) fantasy. The actual words: "Mobile VoIP is no more than the wet dream of a bunch of consultants and equipment guys, and at best it will never be more than five per cent of total voice revenues."

Or, to put it the way Lars Godell at Forrester did "facing combined competitive pressure and massive vendor hype, several incumbent telcos have launched their own first-generation triple-play services. Forrester thinks all incumbents need to take a deep breath before proceeding further down the IPTV path, as the odds are stacked against telco success with TV services."

And, Godell concluded: "Telcos should see TV services as purely defensive and forget about any potential revenue and profit uplift. Forrester's new, detailed bottom-up P&L model looks at the profit potential from 15 main revenue categories across 17 countries and shows that the vendor-recommended solution would be financial suicide."

But for startup companies like Truphone, five per cent of overall voice revenues would be dreams beyond the deepest avarice, and having a smartphone which doesn't require Truphone and its rivals to write their own software stack means that Nokia has a real rival, at last, in the WiFi phone market.

Excitement over the Apple iPhone has, pehaps, gone beyond limits, and one analysis prophesied that Microsoft would respond with a WiMax Zune phone.

According to this source at Crunchgear, it will not be Windows Mobile, but Zune OS, and using OFDM (orthogonal frequency division multiplexing) which, says Matt Hickey, is the technology used in mobile WiMAX. "On Monday, Microsoft filed a mystery application with the FCC for an enigmatic wireless device that could be used to talk over the Internet. Sounds like a VoiP device, right? - not really. The device is described as being used for 'consumer broadband access and networking,' which doesn’t sound like vanilla VoIP."

Such a device may well be in the works, but it isn't what the SIP community will be showing at Barcelona.

It's also thought more likely that the OFDM technology would refer to ordinary WiFi, 802.11g, which uses that technology. Conceivably, it would be Wimedia ultra-wide band; also, it could be another 4G technology, Flash OFDM now owned by Qualcomm.

For a preview of the phone, see this report at Geek.com

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