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Sunday, September 05, 2004

Wireless Industry Leaders Publish Open Specifications for Cellular/WLAN Convergence via Kineto

A set of open specifications for extending mobile voice and data services over Wireless LANs. Companies that participated in the development of the Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) specifications include Alcatel, AT&T Wireless Services, Inc., BT PLC, Cingular Wireless LLC, Ericsson AB, Kineto Wireless Inc., Motorola, Inc., Nokia, Nortel Networks, Inc., O2, Rogers Wireless Inc., Siemens AG, Sony Ericsson, and T-Mobile US.Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) technology provides access to GSM and GPRS mobile services over unlicensed spectrum technologies, including Bluetooth and 802.11. By deploying UMA technology, service providers can enable subscribers to roam and handover between cellular networks and public and private unlicensed wireless networks using dual-mode mobile handsets. With UMA, subscribers receive a consistent user experience for their mobile voice and data services as they transition between networks.This seamless roaming shall work as under:A mobile subscriber with a UMA-enabled, dual-mode handset moves within range of an unlicensed wireless network to which the handset is allowed to connect.Upon connecting, the handset contacts the UMA Network Controller (UNC) over the broadband IP access network to be authenticated and authorized to access GSM voice and GPRS data services via the unlicensed wireless network.
If approved, the subscriber’s current location information stored in the core network is updated, and from that point on all mobile voice and data traffic is routed to the handset via the Unlicensed Mobile Access Network (UMAN) rather than the cellular radio access network (RAN).
ROAMING: When a UMA-enabled subscriber moves outside the range of an unlicensed wireless network to which they are connected, the UNC and handset facilitate roaming back to the licensed outdoor network. This roaming process is completely transparent to the subscriber.
HANDOVER: If a subscriber is on an active GSM voice call or GPRS data session when they come within range (or out of range) of an unlicensed wireless network, that voice call or data session can automatically handover between access networks with no discernable service interruption. Handovers are completely transparent to the subscriber.With the UMA specifications now available, service providers can look to deploy interoperable solutions that enable subscribers to roam and handover seamlessly between cellular networks and public and private WLANs using dual-mode mobile handsets. With UMA technology, subscribers receive a consistent set of mobile voice and data services as they transition between access networks. Solutions based on the UMA specifications support the handover of active mobile voice calls and data sessions between networks, ensuring no interruption of service.

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