UMA "Dead End"
Published: 11 March, 2008
To its credit, BT and the UMA have transformed fixed-mobile convergence from the dirty word, that it used to be in industry circles, into a crucial part of any operators' or vendors' roadmap: However, given that other operators at the event announced that they have dismissed UMA and even IMS, and instead will be launching "other technology" based FMC services by the end of the year, one cannot help but think that BT and the UMA have already fallen behind in the FMC game before they have even launched.
This was driven home by a universal dismissal of FMC buzzwords like "seamless", as well as the consumer focus of the UMA, in favour of the enterprise as the real world model. Despite "seamless" being one of those perennial FMC and wireless promises, the fact is that "FMC needs seams"; the user needs to be aware of where they can download large files for free and where they will incur exorbitant GPRS/3G rates, where they have broadband and where they have narrowband, where they are charged by the minute and where they are charged by volume.
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