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Voicestream Quietly Releases GPRS In The U.S.

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the some-bits-cost-more-than-others dept.

News 141

hidden72 writes: "Voicestream quietly rolled out their iStream GPRS wireless data service in the United States last week. More information is available from Voicestream's website. General information about GPRS can be found here. Theoretically, GPRS data rates can reach close to 170k. Voicestream's per-packet charges are quite expensive, ($40 for 10MB) but it's an always-on 28k-56k data connection available in most metropolitan areas."

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fucking (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377567)

cunts!

Re:fucking (-1)

count_sporkula (446625) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377573)

anyone in particular? or just cunts in general ?

Re:fucking (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377580)

nah, just cunts in general. let's try this again: cunt [smutserver.com]

Re:fucking (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377613)

fucking cunts is nice
even the women like it

New Release (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377572)

AC Releases hot cum, right up your ASS!

Osama Bin Goatse (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377576)



* g o a t s e x * g o a t s e x * g o a t s e x *
g g
o / \ \ / \ o
a| | \ | | a
t| `. | | : t
s` | | \| | s
e \ | / / \\\ -- \\ : e
x \ \/ --~~ ~--| \ | x
* \ \-~ ~-\ | *
g \ \ .--------.__\| | g
o \ \_// ((> \ | o
a \ . C ) _ ((> | / a
t /\ | C )/ OSAMA \ (> |/. t
s / /\| C) BIN | (> / \. s
e | ( C__)\GOATSE/ // / / .\ e
x | \ | \\__// (/ | x
* | \ \) `---- --' | *
g | \ \ / / | g
o | / | | \ | o
a | | / \ \ | a
t | / / | | \ |t
s | / / \/\/ | |s
e | / / | | | |e
x | | | | | |x
* g o a t s e x * g o a t s e x * g o a t s e x *

Re:Osama Bin Goatse (-1)

mackga (990) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377591)

i feel it is my patriotic duty to counter this arab-inspired faggotry that is polluting this pos webboard. now we all know that the fucking ragheads are the worlds worse offenders when it comes to perverse sexual practices. when they can't fuck each other's male anus, they're off in the stinking desert fucking camels. and while there are some so-called americans who condone, nay, even participate in, these kinds of evil devil-inspired towel-head sodomistic filthy practices - most notably taco and hemos the hamster stuffer, there are still right-thinking people here who enjoy a good old-fashioned patriotic cunt fuck [smutserver.com] . so do your duty, go out now, right this momnet and fuck a cunt for god, country and freedom!

thank you

US joins the rest of the world... (5, Insightful)

MosesJones (55544) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377579)

All I can say is "Thank Standards" its about time that you can use the same phone in the rest of the world and still have it work in the States without having to buy a bulky tri-band number. Now if the billing issues could be sorted out then it would be great.

Why is the US always at least 2 years behind the rest of the planet for Wireless ?

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377607)

What good is 170k if you can't do anything with it? More MP3s for my phone? Download new ring styles in the blink of an eye? It's a waste until they make a GPRS modem for my visor.

Use a palm... (2, Interesting)

led (3096) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377625)

You can use it with a palm... or something else with a irda connection...
A friend of got gprs and uses it to talk on icq in the train, bus, etc
He also uses it to read slashdot :-) so I guess there are some uses for it...

Re:Use a palm... (2, Informative)

gazbo (517111) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377694)

If you download an ssh client for your palm, you can really do interesting stuff with decent bandwidth (I've seen it done over a standard crappy cellphone connection)

I bet BOFH wouldn't be so pissed off if he knew he could delete a user's work or kill their processes whilst sipping a pint at the pub.

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378182)

It'll work through the IR port, just like any other IR phone. Not as convenient as a springboard module, but it'll work. I'm sure someone'll make a Springboard module soon enough.

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (2, Funny)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377612)

The easiest way to get shot is to shoot yourself. If you leave it up to an intern, he'll just shoot your boss and you'll get blamed.

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (3, Informative)

Troed (102527) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377634)

Ericsson T39 [ericsson.com] - triband - not bulky - and GPRS.


(and bluetooth, and irda, and SyncML, and background pictures, and sound&pictures in SMS [EMS], and ...)

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

Troed (102527) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378237)

How is posting info on a cellphone that works in the US - even with GRPS - trolling?

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

jpostel (114922) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378355)

moderator on a no-caffeine rampage

Why GSM Sucks for America (2, Insightful)

shepd (155729) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377803)

As you can see here [fan.net.au] GSM is not a viable solution for most of America. GSM requires almost 3.5 times more towers to operate. For a country so spread out as North America is (compare the total population of Canada and American against Europe and you'll see what I mean) you won't be putting up a tower for one or two people out in the country.

If America needs national coverage (and I think they do) CDMA is the obvious choice.

Re:Why GSM Sucks for America (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377834)

Sorry, my math is screwed up there. I forgot to square the 3.5. That should be about 12 times more towers.

Re:Why GSM Sucks for America (1)

Ghengis (73865) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377893)

Um... North America is not a country

Re:Why GSM Sucks for America (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377966)

Um... sorry. Being that I live there I should know better than to screw up like that. [Sigh... Can't win 'em all]

Re:Why GSM Sucks for America (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378198)

GSM'll work in cites, just not the country. The major cities have pretty good GSM coverage (about as good as anything else), it's just when you go out into the less populated ares that it sucks.

uhm, here's an idea... (1)

Bake (2609) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378256)

don't plant a tower in un-populated areas then!

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

Farce Pest (67765) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377813)

I have had GSM service in the US for more than two years... First with PowerTel and lately with VoiceStream (bought PowerTel, and Deutsche Telekom owns VoiceStream).

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

mrm677 (456727) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377895)

Does you phone work in central Wyoming, Wisconsin, Montana, Idaho, Arkansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, or any of the other sparcely populated areas? I guess if you never go to these places, then who cares, huh?

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (1)

Farce Pest (67765) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378258)

Actually, yes, it does, since I have an analog module as well, which I haven't even put on the phone for several months...

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377879)

Why is the US always at least 2 years behind the rest of the planet for Wireless ?

because the FCC is full of sh*t

Re:US joins the rest of the world... (2, Insightful)

mks113 (208282) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378356)

GSM is a digital communications standard that is not limited to frequencys. European GSM phones use the frequencies in the 800-900MHz range, while in the US, the GSM standard is part of the PCS standard which uses 1800-1900MHz.

So yes, it does use the same digital standards, but on different frequencies. You are still stuck with multi-band phones for international use, but if they can get rid of the analog requirements from the old US standards, phones will be simpler.

Let me get this straight... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377582)

The worst terrorist attacks occurred less than 3 weeks ago, and you people are discussing the fact that Voicestream quietly rolled out their iStream GPRS wireless data service in the United States last week, which provides data rates reaching close to 170k, but with rather expensive per-packet charges ($40 for 10Mb), but thankfully provided as an always-on 28k-56k data connection available in most metropolitan areas? My *god* people, GET SOME PRIORITIES!

Do you honestly think the bodies of the 6000+ dead victims of this unprecedented tragedy really give a good god damn about this? You people make me sick!

Re:Let me get this straight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377590)

What are some five thousand american business persons in comparison to (whatever)?

Re:Let me get this straight... (1, Troll)

itsnotme (20905) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377608)

Yes.. it happened 3 weeks ago.. I would think that the mourning period would be over by now.. Its time to move on.. there's no point in lurking in the past.. might as well look forward to the cool things happening now in the present and hope that more cool things like this happen in the future without any more bad stuff happening!

Re:Let me get this straight... (-1, Troll)

alexburke (119254) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377671)

YHBT. YHL. HAND.

(You have been trolled. You have lost. Have a nice day.)

Re:Let me get this straight... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377682)

6000 people die everyday. We should all stay in our houses and do no work. My *god* what insight.

Re:Let me get this straight... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378140)

My *god* people, GET SOME PRIORITIES!

More then 30000 children dies in the world every fucking day!
Most due to poor quality of water or no water at all!!!

Why does they not get same headlines?

Exterminate Muslims. Destroy Islam. Death to Arabs (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377583)

Our dead cry out n tortured horror:
  1. Kill all Muslims.
  2. Kill all Mohammedans.
  3. Kill all Arabs.
  4. Kill all Towel Heads.
  5. Kill all Camel Jockeys.
  6. Kill all Dune Coons.
  7. Kill all Islam.
  8. Nuke their countries to hell.
  9. Nuke them again.
  10. Death to Islam.

I shit on Mecca. I spit on the Koran. I piss on Mohammed.

I'm surprised (-1)

NotSurprised (525043) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377584)

Voicestream sucks dog shit.

Saw one at the trailer park (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377586)

I don't care what some others say. Personally, I say Voicestream makes the nicest trailer.

US GPRS expensive? (3, Interesting)

alecbrown (66952) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377596)

You quote $40 for 10MB, in the UK the prices are about £7($5) for 1MB if included in the price plan, or 2p/KB ($15/MB) if not, so it seems to be in line.

The problem with GPRS is that the suppliers are likely to kill the market by charging too much and restricting the accessable sevices to a few WAP sites which the supplier has a relationship with (I'm told at least one telco in the UK does this, but I havn't checked it out).

SMS used to be a service that was hardly ever used due to expensive prices and a restriction to the suppliers network, alot of people didn't even know their phones could do it. As soon as the prices dropped and the telcos opened gateways to each other, the volumes exploded, now SMS' are a large part of the telcos' income.

GPRS is something that will be kept in the WAP bracket of niche user base until telcos finally realise that people will use it if they can afford it. Ironically GPRS will solve the main problem with WAP, speed.

Price (2, Interesting)

led (3096) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377629)

Yes, around here in Portugal it's still very expensive, but for those of us that were using regular modem thru gsm we get the benefit of not having to lose 45s just for the modem sync, and about 1.5 mins to login...
Right now it's cheaper doing certain things in gprs.

Use V110 (2, Informative)

germanbirdman (159018) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377677)

Also known as "ISDN" on some phones.

With it, the connection time is practically zero as th GSM connects to the Internet Dialin port via ISDN instead of with a modem. To use it, you just need a different init string, and the other side has to support V110 (not all do, but a lot do).

I use it when connecting my laptop. I only get 9.6 kBit as I don't use it enough for the $10 extra a month to be able to use HSCSD (High speed circuit switched data) which is capable of transferring 14.4*3=43,2 down/14.4 up or something like that. And that only costs regular phone charges.

GPRS is too expensive here in Germany.

If I would use it, I would have to pay $0.35 per 10 kilobytes for the first 100kb and $0.10 after that.

So one MB would cost $3.50 + 90*$0.10 = $12.50 for one megabyte!!!

With HSCSD I only pay $0.10 per minute and get a decent connection. That makes a megabyte price if continously transferring data of $0.35

Re:US GPRS expensive? (2)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377683)

  • GPRS is something that will be kept in the WAP bracket of niche user base until telcos finally realise that people will use it if they can afford it

Consider the first wave of GPRS as an extended beta test; they have to keep numbers down until they iron out the bugs in the system.

Plus, there's only so many people that will use it up anyway. It's not a case of "divide the price by 10, get ten times as many customers". I'm sure someone with a real (snigger) economics degree has worked out this price point to maximise initial profit while minimising the network exposure to a flood of users.

Re:US GPRS expensive? (1)

pipacs (179230) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377779)

The problem with GPRS is that the suppliers are likely to kill the market by charging too much and restricting the accessable sevices to a few WAP sites which the supplier has a relationship with (I'm told at least one telco in the UK does this, but I havn't checked it out).
There are some funny exceptions, like TeleDenmark, a Danish provider who couldn't figure out yet how to charge for data (instead of air time), so they don't charge at all, but call it "introductory price".

Err.. £7 is not $5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378108)

7 quid is about 11 dollars...

Re:US GPRS expensive? (0)

Crazy Viking (230066) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378328)

GPRS is something that will be kept in the WAP bracket of niche user base until telcos finally realise that people will use it if they can afford it. Ironically GPRS will solve the main problem with WAP, speed.

You say that GPRS will solve the main problem with WAP, speed. Well, yes, GPRS is faster than normal CSD because you are allowed to use more immediate bandwitdh without adding cost. But that is not a speed problem is it? You can already surf at speeds of ~40kbps using HSCSD with better average throughput than you can on current GPRS systems.

GPRS is not primarily about speed - it is about immediacy and availability. One catch phrase that has been repeated over and over by equipment manufacturers is "GPRS - Always on". This means that you are "always" connected and you can send and receive data at "any time". Of course the operator has the opportunity to charge you for the time you are on line, but I have not heard of any one that chooses to do so. Instead you pay for the data you transmit and receive. Which brings us to the real bonus: cost!

The real customer benefit of GPRS is twofold: immediate access and cost efficiency. We are able to stay connected when we are not actively using the service because we are not paying for time, only volume. Furthermore we are able to afford the increased data rates of combining several timeslots of in a frame because we only pay for those timeslots during the time it takes to download the data that we requested. This is simply another way of saying that we pay for volume not data.

Summary: GPRS is good because it allows us to surf on our mobiles at lower cost and better immediacy. It does not save the world because it can not make a cup of tea.

--

If we applied the principles of load management in IP networks to rush hour traffic in London then a lot of people would not ever get to work.

$40 for 10mb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377599)

or about a third the cost for the same service in New Zealand.

Unreasonable for Normal Internet Usage (1)

Lunastorm (471804) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377600)

Those prices are quite expensive, especially if you need a wireless connection to download porn, like I do. I guess people who want a connection for non-pornographic related activities might not mind.
BTW, it says on the bottom that PDA's need to be running Windows CE. Unless I'm mistaken, this sounds like another attempt to alienate the non-MS community. I say we declare war.

Re:Unreasonable for Normal Internet Usage (1)

toni (3262) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377609)

Many people are using GPRS with Palm/Handspring
PDA's, and I don't see why Voicestream's service
would be any different. AFAIK, all GPRS phones can be connected to a computer using a standard serial cable. The phone pretends to be a modem and when you dial a certain number, say #99*, you get a "connect" and a PPP handshake, pretty general stuff that is supported everywhere.

Re:Unreasonable for Normal Internet Usage (3, Informative)

oolon (43347) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377660)

I infact found my Motorola Timeport GPRS easier to setup under linux than ce or windows! The motorola software (for windows) does not work on com2 Active Sync does not like com2 either, and when it is working on com1 it does not seem to configure the modem correctly 50% of the time. Ce was just a pain requiring it to be configured on 2 different place, dial and modem, each screen you have to go though 3 pages of "advanced settings"

My chap script for linux however took me about 30 seconds to get working.

'' 'ATZ'
'' 'AT+CGDCONT=1,"IP","ADF.BTCELLNET.NET"'
'OK' 'ATDT*99#'
'TIMEOUT' '30'
'~--' ''

James

Palm has a GRPS modem out.. (2, Informative)

itsnotme (20905) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377604)

Palm has a nice GRPS modem out.. seems like anybody with a decent palm and the modem within a area that is accessible by GRPS would be quite happy except if they cant afford the service.. I for one wouldnt mind being in a Cafe and whipping out my Palm and looking up the current movie listings for teh area I'm in and be able to find a decent movie that I want to watch..

Voicestream has a page that has GRPS capable devices at: http://www.gsmworld.com/technology/gprs_terminals. html [gsmworld.com]

40$ is quite cheap .. (2)

mbyte (65875) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377605)

Here in germany its 190 DM (about 90 us$) for 10 MB .. :(

And they wonder why noone is using this :)

in fact the only application for gprs would be to check your email with a handheld computer.

Surfing the web is way too expensive with it :)

Re:40$ is quite cheap .. (1)

andorxor (59347) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377680)

These prices are the result from converting time based WAP rates into volume based GPRS rates.
These totally unaffordable rates render any mobile communication application besides WAP and EMail unusable. Thus the telco providers effectively prevent innovation with this pricing policy.

Ok, if you're a big enough business you may be able to negotiate more realistic conditions...

Re:40$ is quite cheap .. (0)

Juergen Kreileder (123582) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377839)

Here in germany its 190 DM (about 90 us$) for 10 MB .. :(
Actually you can get that down to DM 48/$23 per 10M with T-D1 GPRS Giga [t-d1-company.de] (with a monthly surcharge of DM 30/$14).

Nevertheless I wouldn't call it cheap...

Re:40$ is quite cheap .. (1)

Gerein (169540) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378001)

Here in germany its 190 DM (about 90 us$) for 10 MB .. :(


Your're using the wrong network. Viag charges 9 Pfennig per 10kB, which is roughly the same as Voicestream...

I agree, however, that it's still too much!

Costs (3, Informative)

forgoil (104808) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377611)

The reason mobile phones are doing so well in europe is the price and the flexibility. Sweden are for instance way ahead of the states, way better standard (GSM all the way), better deals and SIM cards instead of locking the consumers in.

So what does this got to do with GPRS? Well, charging per packets will be expensive, even more so as you will pay for everything in and out (I guess). WAP push will not be fun for example. And it could very very easily become extremly expensive for the cosumer, and hard to check up on how expensive it has become before it is too late. Charge me a monthly sum according to the QoS I get and I would think about it, like it is now I can not recommend anyone to use it, unless they are very rich.

Re:Costs (4, Informative)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377696)

  • charging per packets will be expensive

It does at least ensure that they will get light users, so their usage figures will make them more inclined to go to flat rate.

Contrast with a couple of broadband fixed line ISPs in Australia and the UK, that are howling in outrage that people are actually using their bandwidth, and have introduced daily and monthy usage caps. Want to bet that your ISP won't follow suit if too many people actually start using their cables and DSL to leech serious amounts of data?

Unmetered suffers from chicken and egg. Until you have low prices, you won't get high takeup and therefore a sustainable base of "average" users. Until you have "average" users, you take a real beating on the service.

At least paying by the packet should ensure that (once the network snafu's are worked out) the prices will drop quickly to get numbers up, and they will go unmetered eventually, at which point you and I can jump onboard and realise the dream of being connected 24/7. Aaaaah, nice.

Re:Costs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377737)

"It does at least ensure that they will get light users..."

Well actually it's the other way around. GPRS is still very much in it's infancy, so much so in fact, that it's exclusively directed towards the "early adopters." Said adopters tend to be corporate/exec types, who doesn't foot the bills themselves.

GPRS coverage, cost of equipment (and I'm not talking phones here) is still such that it couldn't be mass marketed just yet. Better then to do your beta trials with few customers (and call them "partners") with relatively deep pockets.

Give it 5 years or so, and the prices will have come down significantly.

Re:Costs (2, Insightful)

forgoil (104808) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377742)

Contrast with a couple of broadband fixed line ISPs in Australia and the UK, that are howling in outrage that people are actually using their bandwidth, and have introduced daily and monthy usage caps.
This is both a real and a serious problem. The problem is that the ISPs couldn't get it in their heads that people will use all the resources they can, i.e. hog as much bandwidth as they can. Why shouldn't they? The problem as I see it, is that the ISPs want to go in late and try to "fix" the problem, only causing even more problems. The phone companies are not quite as fresh when it comes to these things, hence the per unit charge.
As I suggested in my original post, I would prefer a payment plan for a QoS (Quality of Service). In other words, I buy a bandwidth. Let's say I buy 256kbit/s. If the system doesn't use the capacity, I will get the full speed, but if a user with 1Mbit/s needs the bandwidth, I have to live with my 256kbit/s. The same would be a piece of cake (actually easier) with GPRS and the likes. I recommend anyone who wants to know to read up on GPRS (I am sure any other system would be fairly similar).
The worst part will be the sob stories in the media about people with huge bills. Why can't the phone companies stop peoples services before they ruin themselves?

In Finland... (3, Informative)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377627)

99Fims (about 15$) a month for unlimited GPRS data-access :)

Re:In Finland... (1)

led (3096) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377637)

sure rub it in!

:-)

darn this filters.... will this never end ?

Re:In Finland... (1)

toni (3262) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377644)

That's just interim pricing, I am sure it will change as soon as Sonera makes up their mind. And also, it's just one timeslot ( =slow) for now.

Re:In Finland... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377668)

That is one advantage to having a racially pure society. Finland is the home of White Folk. You don't have to stoop to the lowest common denominator of Negroes, Jews, Spics, Chinks, and so on. In the USA, the minority groups act as a drag on the rest of the population. In the USA, minority groups are a parsite feeding on the host, sucking out the vigor from our country. Rather than work for a living, these minority groups leech off hundreds of social "programs" draining away funds that could be devoted to technological innovation.

If that weren't bad enough, these minorities actively engage in crime and violence which is a further drain on resources. Funds which could be devoted to technological innovation are instead funneled in the police, courts, and jails. The jails are bursting at the seams with every form of low-life minority group living human excrement imaginable. Warehouseing these beasts drains billions of dollars from our economy, money which would otherwise be unavailable for innovation.

Yes, Finland has it good. Finns should look around their country at their kinsmen, and breath a sigh of relief. Then they should look to the USA and see what the horrors are wraguht when racial purity is violated.

Hair (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377736)

Are you growing your hair back, or are you just as overt in public?

the possibilities astonish. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377632)

wow, now imagine if these all had that *911 gsm deal.

i wonder how the swedes feel about this? new zealand? i wonder how they reacting to this in guam.

i wonder what the effects this service might have on scientists working on cold fusion. i wonder if this will speed up the process?

i wonder if i can interface with the new moterola phone with say, some kind of glove based input device?

I wonder 30 years ago what the founders of email would think about wireless email and how much it costs in new zealand and how the swedes are so much more evolved then we are.

i wonder why i come back here anymore really.

Killer Apps? (4, Interesting)

jarty (165599) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377633)

I'm intrigued to know what 'killer apps' are going to emerge for wireless devices. I know that the role out of WAP here in the UK has been something of a failure as no one could really see the 'benefit' of wireless web surfing which is slower as not as usable as doing it from your home PC.
The truly useful applications will use the GPS location of your phone to give you location dependent services. What's the traffic like 1 mile up the road? Where's the nearest pub that serves Wadworth's 6X? Where's the nearest record store?

Perhaps the Yellow Pages is the killer app.

Re:Killer Apps? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377850)

The truly useful applications will use the GPS location of your phone to give you location dependent services. What's the traffic like 1 mile up the road?

And of course warn you of the cop 1 mile up the road.

Re:Killer Apps? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378329)

"I know that the role out of WAP here in the UK has been something of a failure as no one could really see the 'benefit' of wireless web surfing which is slower as not as usable as doing it from your home PC."

The joy of GPRS is that you don't need to re-establish a connection everytime you want to look at a WAP page, This shoudl significantly improve WAP responsiveness.

Voicestream.... (1, Informative)

Mr. Wanker (522299) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377653)

The other nice thing about Voicestream is that they use GSM, which allows me to roam internationally (no, not just Canada and Mexico). Recently I was on a trip to France, and was able to send and recieve calls just as if I was state-side.

It is a great idea, and the proof of that is AT&T is also building a GSM network.

AT&T (2, Informative)

germanbirdman (159018) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377686)

They're going to use GSM800 aren't they?

Just now phones are starting to have GSM 900/1800/1900 as a standard and now we have GSM 800 as well.

Oh well.

Re:AT&T (1)

davidesh (316537) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377691)

but AT&T doesn't have the quality my voicestream has... sounds like a land line....

Re:AT&T (1)

petros (47274) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378370)

Just now phones are starting to have GSM 900/1800/1900 as a standard and now we have GSM 800 as well.

I thought that AT&T is actually going to be using the 1900Mhz licenses they have in some markets, and maybe get licenses in other markets as well. But I could be wrong. In any case, I believe that there will soon be (or is it out already?) GSM-450 as well, running on the NMT-450 spectrum that is being phased out (in Finland, Sweden, anywhere else?)

Re:Voicestream.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2377698)

I'm personally pissed about that whole business - I use a GSM Cingular handset and we get inconsistent service as we move across the country. In Tulsa, OK Cingular runs one of the local services, but VoiceStream runs the GSM service. Drives me nuts. All the consolidation in the wireless industry has made the USA and ugly hodgepodge of networks and most carriers don't even have a common standard (Except Nextel, possibly Sprint) across their own network. Bah! Multiple standards just bite.

Re:Voicestream.... (0)

Mr. Wanker (522299) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377718)

Voicestream does not seem to have issues like that, and the QOS is great. Another benefit is for me, is that part of the US coverage actually goes into Canada.

If you have ever roamed into Canada, you know how expesive (and cold) that can be!

Re:AT&T GSM (2, Interesting)

cpfeifer (20941) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377949)

Yes they are. And they're testing GPRS in Washington state. Here's the coverage map [attws.com] .

Roaming... (1)

Ando[evilmedic] (199537) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377684)

Great, its global roaming will allow you to use it anywhere including Kazakhstan, but oh no, not Canada. It's just an invisible line dividing a land mass. We're practically american anyway!

Re:Roaming... (1)

Katan (104699) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377954)

Uhmm.. .are you saying you can't use GSM in Canada? Canada is probably the easiest place to roam for US GSM users. The carrier there, Microcell, is heavily invested in by Voicestream.


Also, they use the 1.9 ghz band like the rest of North America, so you don't even need a world phone.


I roamed in Canada quite a bit... works great.

Conspiracy ? (1)

CaptainZapp (182233) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377685)

I wonder if VoiceStream is conspiring with those marketing type geezers that send 8 Mb PowerPoint(tm) presentations to half the company...

how much does progress cost? (2, Interesting)

motherhead (344331) | more than 12 years ago | (#2377695)

I wanted more accurate numbers but when I tried to price the damn phone + plan + contract on Voicestream's website I realized that their little shopping cart prog refuses to give you a running total... I got to the point where I would have had to enter a credit card and agree to terms and they still never let me know what exactly this was costing me. That really sucks. Okay rough guesses:

Motorola phone (that you probably didn't want) 169.99
PDA data plan (that you don't want because you have a Palm or linux on PDA) 19.99
Voice plan (that you don't want because you like the cell you have) 19.99
Compaq ipaq H3635 (because if you have to run WinCE... ) 499.99
Extra battery, mobile charger. (guess) 89.99

Comes out to: $799.95

So for almost a grand I can pretty much have my porno spam beamed straight to the metra train on the way to work... yeah I guess I could also pull down Slashdot as well so that I could keep current about glove input devices as well. True...

I think I am just gonna keep my ugly clumsy Palm VII

But the phone does come with a built in FM tuner. So maybe I am just being a bitch about the whole thing.

Invest in YOUR community (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377731)

One of our first 'official' projects at ScaredCity(?tm?) [scaredcity.com] , is to collaborate with some local independent telcos, to build a tower, to facilitate economical wireless 'net access in our area (northern NY). It's going to take around 2 years to fruite, but as is known, nothing worthwhile, is easy, cheap, or quick to 'market'.

Meanwhile, we're working hard to encourage folks to investigate/participate in, the brave gnu world of open/honest communications/commerce. We will be giving away, this distinctive set of URLs [opensourceworks.com] , including a year's free hosting, as a result of someones' ability to follow simple directions.

So far, we note, A LOT of whining about the asphixiating behaviours of the felonious kingdumb of fud, but a dangerous lack of actual resolution to participate in the offering of alternatives. As far as we're concerned, fud is dead, but we hear that may not be totally true for everybuddy, yet.

huh? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377764)

"So far, we note, A LOT of whining about the asphixiating behaviours of the felonious kingdumb of fud, but a dangerous lack of actual resolution to participate in the offering of alternatives."

What language is this written in? I tried Babelfish, but it choked. It's certainly not English.

Can anyone help? I don't *think* it's 1337-speak, but, it's hard to tell. Spanish, maybe?

GPRS vs HSCSD (3, Informative)

jlemmerer (242376) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377741)

Hi everybody!
I just have to say one thing:
Here in Europe GPRS is already in use in cellular networks so I have some experience with it (the experience comes also from my job, I work at the largest cellular network provider here in Austria). Unlike HSCSD, GPRS does not provide stable data tranfer rates. 170 k sounds cool, but as experience has shown, these rates only apply if you stand directly next to a receiver. HSCSD uses multiple channels, reaches about 43 k and if you loose a channel (e.g. when the network gets crowded) you pay for one channel less. GPRS uses slots in one channel, and if a slot is unavailable - well, bad luck. Here in Austria most people prefer HSCSD for it is cheaper and more reliable, the maximum transmission speed reached with GRPS in real use is only slightly higher than HSCSD and generally speaking -> HSCSD is most times faster. GRPS is not a solution for high speed date. It is only a small step towards UMTS.

bye
johannes

Re:GPRS vs HSCSD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377782)

Actually it depends on how many timeslots you can use. This depends on the Quality of Service you request from the network, and how much your phone can process. At the moment requesting QoS doesn't work, you're only typically going to get 2-4 slots max.
The other thing is the number of timeslots that you can use.
The Motorola's arround at the moment only do 2+1 (2down 1 up).
The issue with using multiple slots is the power requirements for the additional processing. The more bandwidth you use, the more power you use, the shorter you battery lasts.
The other issue at the moment is the heat produced by the phone due to the power requirements.
GPRS will get better, and most of the latency problems it is currently having should be solved within the next 18 months. The big issue is that everything has to change from being circuit-switched to packet-switched data, and that isn't as most people believe.
So yes, HSCSD is quicker and easier to do. The question is, do you want to pay a lot for an open HSCSD call, or do you want to have an active PDP context which doesn't cost you nearly as much?

Re:GPRS vs HSCSD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378254)

This is all theory, in reality, delay measurements for GPRS are unberable.
QoS is also very unlikely to be implemented in any way before IPv6 is out in the world, as timeslot allocation is a very small part of the overall QoS framework in GPRS.

In short GPRS is a dead technology on top of GSM, later when it is part of 3G and QoS is in there maybe it will be interesting, but at $10/meg I doubt anyone would be attracted to it :)

Re:GPRS vs HSCSD (1)

WalterSobchak (193686) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378043)

I do not have much experience with HSCSD, but my experience with GPRS has been the same as with WAP... Being a geek I got myself the technology as soon as I could get my dirty hands on it, and have been utterly dissapointed.
GPRS remains a last resort for me, and with the given prices it will be for quite some time.

Walter

Re:GPRS vs HSCSD (1)

berta (462366) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378128)

The round trip times ( ping replies ) are 3 times higher on gprs compared to hscsd:
gprs 2100ms
hscsd 600ms
Tested on Belgian networks ( Mobistar & Orange ).
Not okay for interactive applications, might work for mail & surf.

Cool! (-1, Troll)

Richard Waite (461548) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377749)

I know I can use this, always on..that is so cool. I do a lot of moving around chicago and I could certainly use this. I just saw another article on Yahoo! [yahoo.com] talking about how this could be put to use.

One question though, one which they didn't seem to cover very well - how about interference from radio/other connections? I don't know much about how this stuff works, and any explanations would be much appreciated.

Re:Cool! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377819)

mod this guy down... BTW: don't click on this link if your at work!

Contract Powertel Users, Sue Voice Stream (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2377771)

Powertel users who signed a contract (ie the 3600 minute plan), VoiceStream has volated your contract. If you want more info please e-mail me:
c0le@ziplip.com

cellular technology (3, Interesting)

mrm677 (456727) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377886)

Enough of these ignorant comments.

GSM is, and still isn't right for the United States for 2 reasons.

1) The European GSM standard uses 900MHz and 1800MHz. Those frequencies are used by the United States government, and have been long before GSM came around. So that's why GSM in the U.S. uses different frequencies. So any GSM phone that is, say 2 years old, won't work in Europe and vice versa.

2) Optimal cell size is a function of population density. Digital technologies, especially GSM, require smaller cell sizes. Simply put, places like Wyoming are not going to be getting digital anytime soon. But they do have analog because you can make those cells huge. GSM does not interoperate well with AMPS. CDMA IS-95 does. You can run a CDMA network and an AMPS network at 800MHz.

I also believe that CDMA is the future (not IS-95). Sure, UMTS is based on time-division, but the Docomo 3G call stack is CDMA-based.

So go buy your VoiceStream phone if you live in a big city. I live in Chicago. VoiceStream is there, but no way will I get a VoiceStream phone because if I ever go to Wisconsin, my phone will not get service. My Verizon CDMA phone gets service anywhere in the country.

Re:cellular technology (2)

Zigurd (3528) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378111)

1) Ericsson T39 with infrared, Bluetooth, GPRS, tri-band, tiny, it rocks.

2) GSM and IS-136 are both more closely related to analog cellular than is CDMA (IS-95). IS-95 cells can be larger, but not because of any relationship to analog.

The (worldwide) future is WCDMA/UMTS, which is where GSM carriers are going, although U.S. and Korean IS-95 networks will evolve to CDMA2000, so it will be safe to stay IS-95 in the U.S. IS-95 is the Betamax of cellular technologies.

Re:cellular technology (2, Interesting)

mrm677 (456727) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378186)

I disagree with point 2. IS-95 interoperates better with AMPS. You can have an IS-95 network running on the A frequencies, and standard AMPS on the B frequencies. I'm not sure of this, but it may even be possible to run AMPS and IS-95 in A or B frequencies. The 1.25MHz spectrum of IS-95 is evenly divisable by the channel frequencies of individual AMPS channels.

Many carriers in the U.S. will evolve to CDMA2000, which can be regarded as a stepping stone to WCDMA as soon as they figure out the spectrum. Kind of like how GPRS is a stepping stone from GSM to UMTS.

How long as that nifty Ericsson phone been around? I'm sure its a great phone, but realize that carriers have to plan their networks years before all of these nifty phones come to market.

I'm not knocking GSM...its a great standard and Europe is very fortunate to have a nice uniform standard. It just wasn't right for the U.S. at the time (early 90's). I also like the SIM cards which are non-existant in IS-95.

Re:cellular technology (2, Interesting)

Yokaze (70883) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378260)

1)
Well, there are several tri-band mobiles out there, and Europe and Japan there aren't many people, who use a 2 year old mobile.

2)
Actually, UMTS uses for paired bands UTRA FDD with W-CDMA (Wide-Band Code Division Multiple Access) and for unpaired bands UTRA TDD with TD-CDMA (Time Division Code Division Multiple Access) is employed.
IRC, UTRA FDD is used for symmetrical circuit-switched services like voice and video-telephone, so generally you will use W-CDMA.
Here some further explanations [toronto.edu] to UMTS and GSM.

A GSM cell has a range up to 64km (e.g. coastal region) and normally up to 32km. Those are protocol related limitations. Usually cells are smaller due to surrounding buildings or mountains. But those physical limitations apply to any radio signal.

Can you tell me what is the typical cell range of a CDMA or a D-AMPS system?

UMTS cell sizes, and CDMA-networks in general, depend on the number of users as the signal to noise ratio increases with the number of users.
This is unevitable, since one users will be noise for to the other users, which is the prinicple of CDMA.
With up to 5 users you have a cell range of about 1.4km with 40 users the cell range is only 0.6km, with 42 users the cell range is 0.3km.
CDMA cells tend to "breathe".
The numbers are of no importance for CDMA in general, but the tendency is.
How do you plan coverage for breathing cells?

>Digital technologies, especially GSM, require smaller cell sizes

Please explain to me, what the causal relationship between cell-size and employing digital technologies is.

Re:cellular technology (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378279)

Nortel CDMA cells with low capacity (no. of simultaneous users) can go up to 200km range... used here in rural areas of 'down under'...

as the capacity grows, then the range reduces...

Re:cellular technology (3, Insightful)

gus2000 (177737) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378315)

There are several phones that are either tri-band, or dual-band (900 and 1900). In fact, these have been available for a few years but were in the past not popular. Bosch once sold a model but does not anymore. Ericsson previously had the I888, now the T28, the wonderful T39, and the just-announced also wonderful T66. Nokia has also had one model for at least the past year (8890 I believe?). We should also not forget the Motorola 7089 and 7389. Siemens was also supposed to release a model recently. So, there are many handsets available to allow interoperation...you just have to look for them and be prepared to pay a little extra.

Your Verizon CDMA phone may get service everywhere, but it is not digital service everywhere. GSM phones with analog roaming also exist. Microcell in Canada sells (or at least used to sell) Nokia phones with that capability.

Lastly, UMTS is going to be WCDMA. There are of course patent issues as Qualcomm is claiming to own "relevant" IP.

I'll stick to dial up.. (2)

slashkitty (21637) | more than 11 years ago | (#2377950)

Gotta love my nokia 8290 w/ voicestream. IR modem to laptop or handheld. doubley wireless ;-)
I can dial right into my ISP and voicestream it
doesn't cost anything when it's in my minutes.
[djw.org]

http://www.djw.org/information/palm8290.html

Re:I'll stick to dial up.. (1)

davidesh (316537) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378004)

so true... and next year we are getting the 9290

Hey, morons! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378012)

You want to maybe tell us what the hell GPRS stands for so that the 99% of us who aren't drooling nerds will have some idea what the fuck you're talking about?

What is GPRS ? (1)

alch (30445) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378362)

GSM Packet Radio Service - It's a quick inexpensive upgrade for GSM networks to get Packet data. GSM is currently Circuit Switched Data (CSD), you dial up an ISP. GPRS allows an "always on" connection. The data rate does not go up significantly - that is what EDGE ( Enhanced Datarates for GSM Evolution ) and UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecomunications System). UMTS actualy does more now - it will allow MobileIP, a full IP Core network for voice transport, Data roaming from Wi-Fi to GPRS. Not voice though - it requires "Hard Real Time" and QoS (Quality of Service) capabilities.

It's the pricing, stupid (5, Insightful)

cryptochrome (303529) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378259)

On the surface, Voicestream's plan doesn't sound bad. In Japan, you pay 0.1 yen per 128 byte packet, or about $75 per 10mb. $40 for 10mb is only half that, at about 0.05 cents per packet. Cost-wise, it's fine - but you have to buy your packets ahead of time, and you have to buy your voice minutes separately! In Japan, you buy your (subsidized to be cheap) phone, pay a flat $3/mo fee for the activation and use, and then just pay as you go by packets you send or request, be it for voice or data. As a result, text messaging in Japan (and europe) has become hugely popular and people use their phones for practically everything.

When are the American companies going to learn that what is holding the cellular market back is not so much the technology as the bass-ackwards system of purchasing a calling plan for a whole year with a certain number a minutes a month and a preposterous number of restrictions while still having to pay for incoming calls. It's overly complex, intimidating, and autocratic. These idiotic games are precisely the reason I do not yet own a mobile phone. I don't mind paying more for the phone, but I won't pay for more minutes/data than I use, and I hate playing guessing games.

It irritates me to see US technology so far behind Europe and Japan for such a stupid, greedy reason. As far as I'm concerned, a mobile phone should work anywhere in the world that a network exists, and have consistent, per-use billing regardless of where you are. Until we have something approaching that in America, I'm not buying. Here's hoping Sprint or ATT figure it out.

quietly ???? (2)

n3m6 (101260) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378324)

quietly ????

and on slashdot /???

what are u talking about ??

no you dummy GSM in the states is 1900 and 900 not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#2378348)

the European 1800 -- so in effect you still need a dual or tri band phone to use it in both the states and Europe. GSM is simply a Euro hack and slash of TDMA which itself is a warmed over AMPS implementation --- in short it is not the best choice out there technology wise -- but then design by committe (espeically European committe it seems) is always bad.

In many ways CDMA (ala Sprint PCS) is a superior carrier, if only for security reasons.

GPRS speed and performance != bandwidth (1)

mattscape (264484) | more than 11 years ago | (#2378443)

A colleaque student did a diploma thesis with gprs (Hey Joergi where are you). And he experienced roundtrip times around 2s. Yes two seconds !!!

I'm not to familiar with this whole matter but what is theoreticly 170k good for if I need 6 secs for a handshake ?
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