[kwlug-disc] android phone, anyone?

Bob Jonkman bjonkman at sobac.com
Thu Dec 17 21:29:30 EST 2009


I expect that the other carriers will eventually offer more advanced 
phones that also cover the AWS spectrum.  It may even reach the point 
where other carriers will eventually make use of those frequencies 
themselves.  Does anyone know if the AWS frequencies will be rolled out 
in Europe and Asia, or are those frequencies already assigned to some 
other purpose there?

As phones continue to become more sophisticated they'll contain radios 
capable of transmitting at AWS frequencies.  AWS is a lower frequency 
than WiFi, so I don't see a technical limitation. 

The biggest problem will be carriers like Bell and Rogers that won't 
accept open phones, and cripple their own phones to disable the use of 
AWS.  Hopefully Wind Mobile will allow open phones or unlocked phones 
from other vendors on their network.  Wind Mobile has already said 
they'll be locking their phones initially, until they have enough market 
penetration that they no longer need to depend on phone sales. Even 
though Wind Mobile will be offering contractless service, I think the 
up-front phone price is still below sustainability unless they sell some 
air time too.  The fear is that customers will buy the phones, and then 
the other carriers will undercut prices to lure those customers away 
(so, no air-time sales).  That should be diminished if the phones are 
locked.  There was also talk of the other carriers buying up all the 
phone stock so there wouldn't be any left for legitimate Wind customers 
(and so, no air-time sales). 

--Bob.


Bob Jonkman <bjonkman at sobac.com>         http://sobac.com/sobac/
SOBAC Microcomputer Services              Voice: +1-519-669-0388
6 James Street, Elmira ON  Canada  N3B 1L5  Cel: +1-519-635-9413
Software   ---   Office & Business Automation   ---   Consulting




Khalid Baheyeldin wrote:
> If you ever travel, specially outside of Canada/USA, then GSM is the
> standard to have. If you have a handset that can do GSM (tri-band or
> quad-band) then you are good for most of the world.
>
> What this means is that you can buy a local SIM card and pop it
> into your handset and you are good to go.
>
> Prices are far cheaper in other parts of the world than here, for example
> I am told that a SIM card (effectively a phone number and a prepaid plan)
> is 10 LE in Egypt (that is CAD $1.92), and you can load it with 25 LE (that
> is CAD $4.81!) for 100 minutes.
>
> This beats roaming charges which can rack up in the 100s.
>
> Only Rogers and Fido have world standard GSM in Canada.
>
> A new player that opened for business yesterday is WIND Mobile. I was
> initially happy to hear that a new entrant is coming the the market. They
> are backed by an Egyptian magnate who made lots of money putting cell
> phone networks in many parts of the world.
>
> My enthusiasm was dampened after I found out that they operate in the
> AWS spectrum which is non-standard in the rest of the world (i.e. not
> GSM compatible). What this means is that unlocked phones will not
> work with them, meaning they have less handset choices and you have
> to buy it from them (something that is totally alien elsewhere).
>
> It is good ot have competition though. Perhaps Rogers will lower their
> prices eventually.
>
> For handsets, there is a new Android "Droid" phone that is getting good
> reviews. There is also the Nokia N900 which is Debian Linux.
>   
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