IPWireless, a pioneer in developing key enabling integrated mobile broadcast (IMB) technology, and Huawei, provider of next generation telecommunications network solutions for operators around the world, have jointly announced that the two companies have signed a cooperation agreement with respect to the production of each party’s IMB technology. This cooperation will include interoperability testing (IOT) and service provider trials.
These groundbreaking interoperability tests will assure operators that they can confidently source IMB equipment from multiple vendors and assure handset manufacturers that their devices will be fully compatible with all IMB networks. IMB is capable of streaming live video and broadcasting and storing popular content on the device for later consumption – both resulting in significant offloading of data traffic from existing 3G networks.
IPWireless and Huawei are committed to the development of an IMB ecosystem and ensuring readiness of the technology for market as quickly as possible. IOT will ensure compatibility between Huawei IMB base stations and IPWireless chipsets. Both companies are also working together on several commercial and technical IMB pilots.
IMB was defined in the 3GPP release 8 standards, and was recently endorsed by the GSMA as their preferred method for the efficient delivery of broadcast services. IMB enables spectrally efficient delivery of broadcast services, in TDD spectrum based on techniques that are aligned with existing FDD WCDMA standards. This allows for a smooth handover between IMB and existing 3G networks. Operators can use IMB within a spectrum band that, although already allocated to them in connection with many 3G licenses, has hitherto been unused due to the lack of an appropriate technology.
“For IMB to achieve its full potential it is critical that solutions based on the technology are brought to market as quickly and easily as possible,” said William Jones, chief executive officer, IPWireless. “As a leader in this industry, we are dedicated to the development of the ecosystem so that operators and their hardware partners are able to confidently and swiftly deploy IMB solutions. We are delighted to be working with Huawei in ensuring that the huge potential for mobile broadcast is realised.”
“Our operator customers are seeing an explosive growth in mobile data traffic, driven by consumer appetite for multimedia on the move,” said Jiang Wangcheng, President of Huawei UMTS network. “IMB provides profitability to mobile broadband operators for their business. We are very pleased to partner with IPWireless to explore the approach of developing profitable mobile broadband network, and to promote the IMB technology to matureness and commercialization.”
The companies are aiming to commence interoperability testing in Q3 2010.