Fixed-mobile convergence featured prominently at Mobile World Congress

* FMC announcements by NeuStar, NetIndex, Movial, and others at GSMA's Mobile World Congress

At the GSMA's Mobile World Congress held last week in Barcelona, more than 55,000 visitors met to do business and debate the future of the mobile phone industry - and convergence featured prominently in the 300-plus show-related announcements and company press releases. Today, we'd like to highlight items from NeuStar, NetIndex, Movial and others that caught our attention.

* NeuStar announced that the GSM Association (GSMA) will pilot a service that simplifies the transmission of instant messages, MMS, e-mails, video and other IP-based communications between mobile phones and between mobile and fixed-line phones. NeuStar will manage the service on the GSMA's behalf. The pilot will use electronic numbering (ENUM) with a Number Resolution Service (NRS) that automatically translates a phone number into an IP-based address, simplifying IP connectivity and applications that use existing phone numbers and contact books in user handsets.

* NetIndex, Kaga Electronics, and Runcom Technologies demonstrated a jointly developed VoIP portable telephone using WiMAX (IEEE802.16e). The phone also enables high-speed mobile data applications like a Web browser connected to the Internet. The phone can also connect to networks using Wi-Fi, and is “suited to business enterprises where the use of wireless solutions other than WiMAX such as 3G, PHS, and internal PHS is possible,” according to the three companies.

* Movial and Global IP Solutions' (GIPS) launched a “Social Communicator” application that uses the GIPS Mobile VoIP software. The application brings together voice and video calling, social media content (e.g. YouTube, RSS feeds, Flickr, etc.), unified messaging, online information delivery, and video feeds on mobile devices and the personal computer. It is designed to assure that “VoIP functionality, both on mobile phones and PCs, is the highest-quality experience available” according to the company’s statement.

Next time, we’ll highlight announcements made at the show from Microsoft and Cbeyond, Sonus Networks, and Tellabs.

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