Advanced Computer Network
Ong Pei Ying GS12903
Mohd Shahril bin Saharedan GS12883
Lai Meng Chai GS12870
Table of Content :
1. Introduction 2
2. 3G Wireless Market Drivers 4
3. Existing Mobile Networks / Evolution on Mobile Communication Technologies 7
3.1 First Generation Wireless Technology 7
3.2 Second Generation Wireless Technology 7
4. Next Generation Mobile Networks 9
4.1 Second Generation (2G+) Wireless Networks 9
4.2 Third Generation (3G) Wireless Networks 15
4.2.1 Cellular Standards for the Third Generation: The ITU's IMT-2000 family 21
4.3 Comparison of 2G and 3G Mobile Networks 23
5. Evolution to 3G Wireless Technology 26
5.1 Interworking with 2G and 2G+ Wireless Networks 27
5.2 3G Licensing in Asia 29
5.3 Variety of Mobile Multimedia Service – Applications for 3G Network
And wireless Services 30
5.4 The Challenges of the 3G Wireless Service 32
5.5 Implications On Electronic Government (EG) in Malaysia 33
6. Summary View on 3G 34
7. Conclusion 37
Third Generation (3G) mobile devices and services will transform wireless
communications into on-line, real-time connectivity. 3G wireless technologies will allow
an individual to have immediate access to location-specific services that offer
information on demand. The first generation of mobile phones consisted of the analog
models that emerged in the early 1980s. The second generation of digital mobile phones
appeared about ten years later along with the first digital mobile networks. During the
second generation, the mobile telecommunications industry experienced exponential
growth both in terms of subscribers as well as new types of value-added services. Mobile
phones are rapidly becoming the preferred means of personal communication, creating
the world's largest consumer electronics industry.
The rapid and efficient deployment of new wireless data and Internet services has
emerged as a critical priority for communications equipment manufacturers. Network
components that enable wireless data services are fundamental to the next-generation
network infrastructure. Wireless data services are expected to see the same explosive
growth in demand that Internet services and wireless voice services have seen in recent
This paper presents an overview of current technology trends in the wireless technology
market, a historical overview of the evolving wireless technologies and an examination of
how the communications industry plans to implement 3G wireless technology standards
to address the growing demand for wireless multimedia services.
2. 3G Wireless Market Drivers
Telecommunications service providers and network operators are embracing the recently
adopted global third generation (3G) wireless standards in order to address emerging user
demands and to provide new services. The concept of 3G wireless technologies
represents a shift from voice-centric services to multimedia-oriented (voice, data, video,
fax) services. In addition, heavy demand for remote access to personalized data is fueling
development of applications, such as the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) and
multimedia management, to complement the 3G protocols. Complementary standards,
such as Bluetooth, will enable interoperability between a mobile terminal (phone, PDA
etc.) and other electronic devices, such as a laptop/desktop and peripherals, providing
added convenience to the consumer and allowing for the synchronization and uploading
of information at all times.
According to Lehman Brothers, approximately 50 percent of current voice services
subscribers are expected to use wireless data services by 2007, instead of 25 percent as
previously forecast1. Lehman Brothers further predicts that, within seven years, 18
percent of cellular revenues and 21 percent of PCS (personal communications services)
revenue will come from wireless data services. Cellular subscriptions are forecast to
exceed one billion by 20032, compared with the 306 million that was forecast at the end
of 1998, representing a compound annual growth of 29 percent. Demand for voice
services has traditionally been a market driver. However, today, demand for data services
has emerged as an equally significant market driver. After many years of stasis, the
telecommunications industry is undergoing revolutionary changes due to the impact of
increased demand for data services on wire line and wireless networks. Up until recently,
data traffic over mobile networks remained low at around 2% due to the bandwidth
limitations of the present second-generation (2G) wireless networks. Today, new
technologies are quickly emerging that will optimize the transport of data services and
offer higher bandwidth in a mobile environment. As a case in point, the increased use of
the Internet as an acceptable source for information distribution and retrieval, in
Business Wire, Feb 25, 2000
Mobile Data Handbook, The Road to Mobile Internet by Merrill Lynch, 24 September 1999
conjunction with the increased demand for global mobility has created a need for 3G
wireless communications protocols.
The third generation of mobile communications will greatly enhance the implementation
of sophisticated wireless applications. Users will be able to utilize personal, location-
based wireless information and interactive services. Also, many companies and
corporations are restructuring their business processes to be able to fully exploit the
opportunities provided by the emerging new wireless data services. Many advanced
wireless services are already available today, and the introduction of 3G wireless
technologies will add to their ubiquity.
The mobile telecommunications revolution over the past 20 years has proven that time
and again innovation, cost efficiency and pervasiveness could only happen with open
standards and competition. According to the ITU, in 1986 there were just 1.4 million
mobile subscribers, compared to 410 million fixed telephones lines. In late 1990s,the
number of mobile phones overtook the number of fixed lines in some countries, e.g. in
Finland, and this has happened in many countries since. During the first half of 2002,the
number of mobile subscribers worldwide reached the magical one billion figure. And this
exponential growth continues unabated. Continues unabated.
The communications boom of later years has largely been thanks to the widespread
adoption of mobile phones. From an extreme luxury two decades ago to the role of basic
phone service for many millions today in the developed and developing world, it is
largely due to GSM’s emergence and subsequent dominance of the global mobile
industry. Only through such massive adoption and interoperability have technology
developers been able to achieve the economies of scale necessary to bring the cost of
high technology down to the levels accessible to so many hundreds of millions of people.
3. Existing Mobile Networks / Evolution on Mobile Communication
3.1 First Generation Wireless Technology
The first generation of wireless mobile communications was based on analog signaling.
Analog systems, implemented in North America, were known as Analog Mobile Phone
Systems (AMPS), while systems implemented in Europe and the rest of the world were
typically identified as a variation of Total Access Communication Systems (TACS).
Analog systems were primarily based on circuit-switched technology and designed for
voice, not data.
3.2 Second Generation Wireless Technology
The second generation (2G) of the wireless mobile network was based on low-band
digital data signaling. The most popular 2G wireless technologies is known as Global
Systems for Mobile Communications (GSM). GSM systems, first implemented in 1991,
are now operating in about 140 countries and territories around the world. An estimated
248 million users now operate over GSM systems. GSM technology is a combination of
Frequency Division Multiple Access (FDMA) and Time Division Multiple Access
(TDMA). The first GSM systems used a 25MHz frequency spectrum in the 900MHz
band. FDMA is used to divide the available 25MHz of bandwidth into 124 carrier
frequencies of 200kHz each. Each frequency is then divided using a TDMA scheme into
eight timeslots. The use of separate timeslots for transmission and reception simplifies
the electronics in the mobile units. Today, GSM systems operate in the 900MHz and 1.8
GHz bands throughout the world with the exception of the Americas where they operate
in the 1.9 GHz band.
In addition to GSM, a similar technology, called Personal Digital Communications
(PDC), using TDMA-based technology, emerged in Japan. Since then, several other
TDMA-based systems have been deployed worldwide and serve an estimated 89 million
people worldwide. While GSM technology was developed in Europe, Code Division
Multiple Access (CDMA) technology was developed in North America. CDMA uses
spread spectrum technology to break up speech into small, digitized segments and
encodes them to identify each call. CDMA systems have been implemented worldwide in
about 30 countries and serve an estimated 44 million subscribers.
While GSM and other TDMA-based systems have become the dominant 2G wireless
technologies, CDMA technology is recognized as providing clearer voice quality with
less background noise, fewer dropped calls, enhanced security, greater reliability and
greater network capacity. The Second Generation (2G) wireless networks mentioned
above are also mostly based on circuit-switched technology. 2G wireless networks are
digital and expand the range of applications to more advanced voice services, such as
Called Line Identification. 2G wireless technologies can handle some data capabilities
such as fax and short message service at the data rate of up to 9.6 kbps, but it is not
suitable for web browsing and multimedia applications.
4. Next Generation Mobile Networks
4.1 Second Generation (2G+) Wireless Networks
As stated in a previous section, the virtual explosion of Internet usage has had a
tremendous impact on the demand for advanced wireless data communication services.
However, the effective data rate of 2G circuit-switched wireless systems is relatively
slow -- too slow for today's Internet. As a result, GSM, PDC and other TDMA-based
mobile system providers and carriers have developed 2G+ technology that is packet-
based and increases the data communication speeds to as high as 384kbps. These 2G+
systems are based on the following technologies: High Speed Circuit-Switched Data
(HSCSD), General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) and Enhanced Data Rates for Global
Evolution (EDGE) technologies.
HSCSD is one step towards 3G wideband mobile data networks. This circuit-switched
technology improves the data rates up to 57.6kbps by introducing 14.4 kbps data coding
and by aggregating 4 radio channels timeslots of 14.4 kbps.
GPRS is an intermediate step that is designed to allow the GSM world to implement a
full range of Internet services without waiting for the deployment of full-scale 3G
wireless systems. GPRS technology is packet-based and designed to work in parallel with
the 2G GSM, PDC and TDMA systems that are used for voice communications and for
table look-up to obtain GPRS user profiles in the Location Register databases. GPRS uses
a multiple of the 1 to 8 radio channel timeslots in the 200kHz-frequency band allocated
for a carrier frequency to enable data speeds of up to 115kbps. The data is packetized and
transported over Public Land Mobile Networks (PLMN) using an IP backbone so that
mobile users can access services on the Internet, such as SMTP/POP-based e-mail, ftp
and HTTP-based Web services. For more information on GPRS, please see Trillium's
General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) White Paper at http://www.trillium.com/whats-
EDGE technology is a standard that has been specified to enhance the throughput per
timeslot for both HSCSD and GPRS. The enhancement of HSCSD is called ECSD,
whereas the enhancement of GPRS is called EGPRS. In ECSD, the maximum data rate
will not increase from 64 kbps due to the restrictions in the A interface, but the data rate
per timeslot will triple. Similarly, in EGPRS, the data rate per timeslot will triple and the
peak throughput, including all eight timeslots in the radio interface, will exceed 384 kbps.
GPRS networks consist of an IP-based Public Mobile Land Network (PLMN), Base
Station Services (BSS), Mobile handsets (MS), and Mobile Switching Centers (MSC) for
circuit-switched network access and databases. The Serving GPRS Support Nodes
(SGSN) and Gateway GPRS Support Nodes (GGSN) make up the PLMN. Roaming is
accommodated through multiple PLMNs. SGSN and GGSN interface with the Home
Location Register (HLR) to retrieve the mobile user's profiles to facilitate call
completion. GGSN provides the connection to external Packet Data Network (PDN), e.g.
an Internet backbone or an X.25 network. The BSS consists of Base Transceiver Stations
and Base Station Controllers. The Base Transceiver Station (BTS) receives and transmits
over the air interfaces (CDMA, TDMA), providing wireless voice and data connectivity
to the mobile handsets. Base Station Controllers (BSC) route the data calls to the packet-
switched PLMN over a Frame Relay (FR) link and the voice calls to the Mobile
Switching Center (MSC). MSC switches the voice calls to circuit-switched PLMN
network such as PSTN and ISDN. MSC accommodates the Visitor Location Register
(VLR) to store the roaming subscriber information. The reverse process happens at the
destination PLMN and the destination BSS. On the data side, the BSC routes the data
calls to the SGSN, and then the data is switched to the external PDN through the GGSN
or to another mobile subscriber.
Figure 1 shows a GPRS network.
Figure 2 shows the protocols used in BTS, BSC, SGSN, GGSN, and mobile handsets:
The following is a brief description of each protocol layer in the GPRS network
Sub-Network Dependent Convergence Protocol (SNDCP): protocol that maps
a network-level protocol, such as IP or X.25, to the underlying logical link
control. SNDCP also provides other functions such as compression, segmentation
and multiplexing of network-layer messages to a single virtual connection.
Logical Link Control (LLC): a data link layer protocol for GPRS which
functions similar to Link Access Protocol – D (LAPD). This layer assures the
reliable transfer of user data across a wireless network.
Base Station System GPRS Protocol (BSSGP): processes routing and quality of
service (QoS) information for the BSS. BSSGP uses the Frame Relay Q.922 core
protocol as its transport mechanism.
GPRS Tunnel Protocol (GTP): protocol that tunnels the protocol data units
through the IP backbone by adding routing information. GTP operates on top of
TCP/UDP over IP.
GPRS Mobility Management (GMM/SM): protocol that operates in the
signalling plane of GPRS, handles mobility issues such as roaming,
authentication, selection of encryption algorithms and maintains PDP context.
Network Service: protocol that manages the convergence sub-layer that operates
between BSSGP and the Frame Relay Q.922 Core by mapping BSSGP's service
requests to the appropriate Frame Relay services.
BSSAP+: protocol that enables paging for voice connections from MSC via
SGSN, thus optimizing paging for mobile subscribers. BSSAP+ is also
responsible for location and routing updates as well as mobile station alerting.
SCCP, MTP3, MTP2 are protocols used to support Mobile Application Part
(MAP) and BSSAP+ in circuit switched PLMNs.
Mobile Application Part (MAP): supports signaling between SGSN/GGSN and
4.2 Third Generation (3G) Wireless Networks
3G wireless technologies represents the convergence of various 2G wireless
telecommunications systems into a single global system that includes both terrestrial and
satellite components. One of the most important aspects of 3G wireless technologies is its
ability to unify existing cellular standards, such as CDMA, GSM, and TDMA, under one
umbrella. The following three air interface modes accomplish this result: wideband
CDMA, CDMA2000 and the Universal Wireless Communication (UWC-136) interfaces.
Wideband CDMA (W-CDMA) is compatible with the current 2G GSM networks
prevalent in Europe and parts of Asia. W-CDMA will require bandwidth of between
5Mhz and 10Mhz, making it a suitable platform for higher capacity applications. It can be
overlaid onto existing GSM, TDMA (IS-36) and IS95 networks. Subscribers are likely to
access 3G wireless services initially via dual band terminal devices. W-CDMA networks
will be used for high-capacity applications and 2G digital wireless systems will be used
for voice calls. The second radio interface is CDMA2000 which is backward compatible
with the second generation CDMA IS-95 standard predominantly used in US. The third
radio interface, Universal Wireless Communications – UWC-136, also called IS-136HS,
was proposed by the TIA and designed to comply with ANSI-136, the North American
3G wireless networks consist of a Radio Access Network (RAN) and a core network. The
core network consists of a packet-switched domain, which includes 3G SGSNs and
GGSNs, which provide the same functionality that they provide in a GPRS system, and a
circuit-switched domain, which includes 3G MSC for switching of voice calls. Charging
for services and access is done through the Charging Gateway Function (CGF), which is
also part of the core network. RAN functionality is independent from the core network
functionality. The access network provides a core network technology independent
access for mobile terminals to different types of core networks and network services.
Either core network domain can access any appropriate RAN service; e.g. it should be
possible to access a “speech” radio access bearer from the packet-switched domain.
The Radio Access Network consists of new network elements, known as Node B and
Radio Network Controllers (RNCs). Node B is comparable to the Base Transceiver
Station in 2G wireless networks. RNC replaces the Base Station Controller. It provides
the radio resource management, handover control and support for the connections to
circuit-switched and packet-switched domains. The interconnection of the network
elements in RAN and between RAN and core network is over Iub, Iur and Iu interfaces
based on ATM as a layer 2 switching technology. Data services run from the terminal
device over IP, which in turn uses ATM as a reliable transport with QoS. Voice is
embedded into ATM from the edge of the network (Node B) and is transported over
ATM out of the RNC. The Iu interface is split into 2 parts: circuit-switched and packet-
switched. The Iu interface is based on ATM with voice traffic embedded on virtual
circuits using AAL2 technology and IP-over-ATM for data traffic using AAL5
technology. These traffic types are switched independently to either 3G SGSN for data or
3G MSC for voice.
Figure 3 shows the 3G wireless network architecture.
Figure 4 shows protocols used in Node B, RNC and mobile handsets.
The following is a brief description of each protocol layer in a 3G wireless network
Global Mobility Management (GMM): protocol that includes attach, detach,
security, and routing area update functionality.
Node B Application Part (NBAP): provides procedures for paging distribution,
broadcast system information and management of dedicated and logical resources.
Packet Data Convergence Protocol (PDCP): maps higher level characteristics
onto the characteristics of the underlying radio-interface protocols. PDCP also
provides protocol transparency for higher layer protocols.
Radio Link Control (RLC): provides a logical link control over the radio
Medium Access Control (MAC): controls the access signaling (request and
grant) procedures for the radio channel.
Radio resource Control (RRC): manages the allocation and maintenance of
radio communication paths.
Radio Access Network Application Protocol (RANAP): encapsulates higher
layer signaling. Manages the signaling and GTP connections between RNC and
3G-SGSN, and signaling and circuit-switched connections between RNC and 3G
Radio Network Service Application Part (RNSAP): provides the
communication between RNCs.
GPRS Tunnel Protocol (GTP): protocol that tunnels the protocol data units
through the IP backbone by adding routing information. GTP operates on top of
TCP/UDP over IP.
Mobile Application Part (MAP): supports signaling between SGSN/GGSN and
AAL2 Signaling (Q.2630.1, Q.2150.1, Q.2150.2, AAL2 SSSAR, and AAL2
CPS): protocols suite used to transfer voice over ATM backbone using ATM
adaptation layer 2.
Sigtran (SCTP, M3UA): protocols suite used to transfer SCN signaling protocols
over IP network.
4.2.1 Cellular Standards for the Third Generation: The ITU's IMT-2000 family
It is in the mid-1980s that the concept for IMT – 2000, “International Mobile
Telecommunications”, was born at the ITU as the third generation system for mobile
communications. After over ten years of hard work under the leadership of the ITU, a
historic decision was taken in the year 2000: unanimous approval of the technical
specifications for third generation systems under the brand IMT-2000. The spectrum
between 400 MHz and 3 GHz is technically suitable for the third generation. The entire
telecommunication industry, including both industry and national and regional standards-
setting bodies gave a concerted effort to avoiding the fragmentation that had thus far
characterized the mobile market. This approval meant that for the first time, full
interoperability and interworking of mobile systems could be achieved. IMT-2000 is the
result of collaboration of many entities, inside the ITU (ITU-R and ITU-T), and outside
the ITU ( 3GPP, 3GPP2, UWCC and so on)
IMT-2000 offers the capability of providing value-added services and applications on the
basis of a single standard. The system envisages a platform for distributing converged
fixed, mobile, voice, data, Internet and multimedia services. One of its key visions is to
provide seamless global roaming, enabling users to move across borders while using the
same number and handset. IMT-2000 also aims to provide seamless delivery of services,
over a number of media (satellite, fixed, etc…). It is expected that IMT-2000 will
provide higher transmission rates: a minimum speed of 2Mbit/s for stationary or walking
users, and 348 kbit/s in a moving vehicle. Second-generation systems only provide
speeds ranging from 9.6 kbit/s to 28.8 kbit/s. In addition, IMT-2000 has the following
With the large number of mergers and consolidations occurring in the mobile
industry, and the move into foreign markets, operators wanted to avoid having to
support a wide range of different interfaces and technologies. This would surely
have hindered the growth of 3G worldwide. The IMT-2000 standard addresses
this problem, by providing a highly flexible system, capable of supporting a wide
range of services and applications. The IMT-2000 standard accommodates five
possible radio interfaces based on three different access technologies (FDMA,
TDMA and CDMA):
There was agreement among industry that 3G systems had to be affordable, in
order to encourage their adoption by consumers and operators.
Compatibility with existing systems
IMT-2000 services have to be compatible with existing systems. 2G systems,
such as the GSM standard (prevalent in Europe and parts of Asia and Africa) will
continue to exist for some time and compatibility with these systems must be
assured through effective and seamless migration paths.
The vision for IMT-2000 systems is that they must be easily expandable in order
to allow for growth in users, coverage areas, and new services, with minimum
4.3 Comparison of 2G and 3G Mobile Networks
As mentioned above, although there are many similarities between 2G and 3G wireless
networks (and many of the 2G and 3G components are shared or connected through
interworking functions), there are also many differences between the two technologies.
Table 1 compares the differences between the core network, the radio portion and other
areas of the two networks.
Table 1: Comparison between 2G+ and 3G wireless networks
Feature 2G 2G+ 3G
Core Network MSC/VLR, GMSC, MSC/VLR, GMSC, 3G MSC/VLR (with
HLR/AuC/EIR SGSN, added interworking
GGSN, and transcoding),
HLR/AuC/EIR, CGF GMSC,
MM, CM, BSSAP, GMM/SM/SMS, MM, GMM/SM,MM,CM,B
SCCP, CM, GTP, SSAP,
ISUP,TCAP, MAP, SNDCP,NS, FR, LLC, RANAP,GTP,SCCP,
MTP 3, BSSGP, BSSAP, MTP3B, M3UA,
MTP 2, MTP 1 BSSAP+, SCCP, SCTP,
TCAP, MAP, ISUP, Q.2630.1 (NNI),
MTP 3, MTP 2, MTP TCAP,
1 MAP, ISUP, MTP 3,
MTP MTP 1, Q.2140,
TDM transport TDM, Frame Relay ATM, IP transport
Radio Access BTS, BSC, MS BTS, BSC, MS Node B, RNC, MS
FDMA, TDMA, TDMA, CDMA, W-CDMA,
CDMA EDGE CDMA2000,
MM, CM, RR, MAC, RLC, GMM/SM, MAC,
LAPDm, GMM/SM/SMS, RLC,
LAPD, BSSAP, LLC, SNDCP, PDCP,RRC,Q.2630.1(
SCCP, BSSGP, FR,RR, NNI),NBAP, RNSAP,
MTP 3, MTP 2, MTP BSSAP, SCCP, MTP RANAP, SCCP,
1 3, MTP 2, MTP 1 MTP3B,
M3UA, SCTP, GTP-
U, Q.2140, Q.2130,
Handsets Voice only terminals New type of terminal New type of terminal
Dual mode TDMA Multiple modes
and CDMA Voice, data and video
Voice and data terminals
WAP, no multimedia WAP, multimedia
Databases HLR, VLR, EIR, AuC HLR, VLR, EIR, AuC Enhanced HLR, VLR,
Data Rates Up to 9.6 Kbps Up to 57.6 Kbps Up to 2Mbps
Up to 115Kbps
Up to 384 Kbps
Applications Advanced voice, Short SMS, Internet Internet, multimedia
Roaming Restricted, not global Restricted, not global Global
Compatibility Not compatible to 3G Not compatible to 3G Compatible to 2G,
2G+ and Bluetooth
5. Evolution to 3G Wireless Technology
Initially, 3G wireless technology will be deployed as "islands" in business areas where
more capacity and advanced services are demanded. A complete evolution to 3G wireless
technology is mandated by the end of 2000 in Japan (mostly due to capacity
requirements) and by the end of 2001 in Europe. NTT DoCoMo is deploying 3G wireless
services in Japan in the third quarter of 2000. In contrast, there is no similar mandate in
North America and it is more likely that competition will drive the deployment of 3G
wireless technology in that region. For example, Nextel Communications has announced
that it will be deploying 3G wireless services in North America during the fourth quarter
The implementation of 3G wireless systems raises several critical issues, such as the
successful backward compatibility to air interfaces as well as to deployed infrastructures.
5.1 Interworking with 2G and 2G+ Wireless Networks
The existence of legacy networks in most regions of the world highlights the challenge
that communications equipment manufacturers face when implementing next-generation
wireless technology. Compatibility and interworking between the new 3G wireless
systems and the old legacy networks must be achieved in order to ensure the acceptance
of new 3G wireless technology by service providers and end-users.
The existing core technology used in mobile networks is based on traditional circuit-
switched technology for delivery of voice services. However, this traditional technology
is inefficient for the delivery of multimedia services. The core switches for next-
generation of mobile networks will be based on packet-switched technology which is
better suited for data and multimedia services.
Second generation GSM networks consist of BTS, BSC, MSC/VLR and HLR/AuC/EIR
network elements. The interfaces between BTS, BSC and MSC/VLR elements are
circuit-switched PCM. GPRS technology adds a parallel packet-switched core network.
The 2G+ network consists of BSC with packet interfaces to SGSN, GGSN,
HLR/AuC/EIR. The interfaces between BSC and SGSN network elements are either
Frame Relay and/or ATM so as to provide reliable transport with Quality of Service
3G wireless technology introduces new Radio Access Network (RAN) consisting of
Node B and RNC network elements. The 3G Core Network consists of the same entities
as GSM and GPRS: 3G MSC/VLR, GMSC, HLR/AuC/EIR, 3G-SGSN, and GGSN. IP
technology is used end-to-end for multimedia applications and ATM technology is used
to provide reliable transport with QoS.
3G wireless solutions allow for the possibility of having an integrated network for circuit-
switched and packet-switched services by utilizing ATM technology. The BSC may
evolve into an RNC by using add-on cards or additional hardware that is co-located. The
carrier frequency (5Mhz) and the bands (2.5 to 5Ghz) are different for 3G wireless
technology compared to 2G/2G+ wireless technology. Evolution of BSC to RNC requires
support for new protocols such as PDCP, RRC, RANAP, RNSAP and NBAP. Therefore,
BTS' evolution into Node B may prove to be difficult and may represent significant
capital expenditure on the part of network operators.
MSC evolution depends on the selection of a fixed network to carry the requested
services. If an ATM network is chosen, then ATM protocols will have to be supported in
3G MSC along with interworking between ATM and existing PSTN/ISDN networks.
The evolution of SGSN and GGSN to 3G nodes is relatively easier. Enhancements to
GTP protocol and support for new RANAP protocol are necessary to support 3G wireless
systems. ATM protocols need to be incorporated to transport the services. The HLR
databases evolve into 3G-HLR by adding 3G wireless user profiles. The VLR database
must also be updated accordingly. The EIR database needs to change to accommodate
new equipment that will be deployed for 3G wireless systems. Finally, global roaming
requires compatibility to existing deployment and graceful fallback to an available level
when requested services are not available in the region. Towards this end, the Operator
Harmonization Group (OHG) is working closely with 3G Partnership Projects (3GPP and
3GPP2) to come up with global standards for 3G wireless protocols.
5.2 3G Licensing in Asia
Beside Japan, other Asian countries which have embarked on the 3G technologies and
services are South Korea, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Despite the
geographical proximity, there is a wide gap in the development of telecommunications
markets among Asian countries, and thus their 3G licensing timeframe.
Details of 3G Licensing in Asia are given in Table 2.
Table 2 : 3G Licensing in Asia
Country Issue Date No. of License Licensing Licensee
Pioneers in 3G Japan Jun-00 3 Beauty Contest NTT DoCoMo,
Licensing J-Phone, KDDI
South Korea Dec-00 2 out of 3 Beauty Contest SK Telecom,
Licenses issued Korea Telecom
Regions with Australia Mar-01 48 out of 58 Spectrum Telstra,
the Highest lots of Auction, with Vodafone,
Mobile spectrum sold spectrum Optus, 3G
Penetration divided Investment,
Rate into 58 lots Hutchison,
Singapore Apr-01 3 out of 4 Spectrum Singtel, M1,
Licenses issued Auction, with StarHub
Hong Kong Oct-01 4 Spectrum HK CSL,
Auction, with Hutchsion,
Taiwan Oct-01 5 Spectrum
Second Wave Malaysia
in 3G China Malaysia has awarded 3G license to Telekom Malaysia Berhad and
Licensing Thailand Maxis in year 2002 through beauty contest.
5.3 Variety of Mobile Multimedia Service - Applications for 3G Network and
You are out doing some errands on a weekend evening and want to get together with
some friends for a movie and dinner. Since it's a Saturday night, the chances are there
will be long lines at the theatre, sold out shows for the movie you want to see, and a
bunch of other movies playing of which you've never heard. You then pull out your new
cell phone with its enhanced screen and check the listing of all the movies at the theatre.
You also view clips from the movies as well. Using the same device, you select the movie
you want to see, buy the tickets online, and then use the instant messaging function to let
your friends who are meeting you know which movie you have selected.
Since you know that the restaurant across the street is going to be busy after the movie,
you decided to make reservations for you and your friends. After the show, once you and
your friends get to the restaurant, you call up on your wireless phone the restaurant's
discount coupon and pay for dinner - avoiding using cash or a credit card.
It is currently difficult to imagine the implications for electronic commerce in economies
that develop broadband mobile access to the Internet and data services that make the
above scenario possible. However, with 3G, the possibilities for wireless applications are
numerous. For instance, calling up a map in your car, conducting a video conference over
wireless phones, checking e-mails, and browsing the web - all without wires.
3G will extend the convenience and freedom of today's digital phones with a “always-on”
Internet connection. They will also deliver a tenfold increase in speed - up to 2 megabits
per second - for sending information from business data to video and games for kids.
There will also be new devices; a cross between today's mobile phones and personal
assistants like the Palm Pilot. These new devices will be online all the time. Hence, in a
3G world, users won't always need to 'dial up' to retrieve email, multimedia attachments
and other data. It will simply be downloaded to their mobile devices as soon as it is sent
or requested. Table 3 illustrates some of the mobile multimedia services (not all are 3G)
that have been launched or being on test in some countries.
Table 3 : Examples of Mobile Multimedia Services (MMS) launched/on test
Country MMS / Year Launched Technology Remark
Japan 1. Car Navigation Service – Mar 2000 3G These services are available
on i-mode (Interactive Mode)
2. Advertisement distribution – Jun
3. Remote sensing/control - Wireless
POS system for vending machine –
4. Music Distribution – Jan 2001
5. Video Clipping – Nov 2001
Philippines 1. Smart Money – Electronic Cash 2G Focus on immediate, low cost
access to Internet and low
2. Entertainment on 2G (mostly SMS text-based)
• Logos and Ring Tones
• Cinema Club
• Text to Millions
Isle of Man 1. Video Telephony 3G The applications are selected
to demonstrate the capability
2. On-line Games
of 3G (compared to 2.5G).
3. Live and Archive Video
4. Location Services
5. Information Services
6. Mobile Office
UK 1. Eurocall Roaming – launched in 3G
2. Virtual Home Environment
3. Mobile Voice & email
4. Ring tones/screensavers/icons
5. Games (Who Wants to be a
6. Location based services
Malaysia 1. Short Message Service (SMS) 2G Testing is being done by
Telekom on GPRS (2.5G)
US Not Available 2G The US has not yet managed
to agree what spectrum will
be available for 3G and so
operators are finding ways to
extend the life of their current
assets by deploying
evolutions of their existing
technologies on 2G
5.4 The Challenges of the 3G Wireless Service
Some of the challenges confronting the wireless carrier in venturing into the 3G wireless
services are as follows:-
Spectrum and investment in 3G is expensive
Is there a business case for 3G wireless services in the enterprise? What can't we
do now that we need 3G to help us do?
Building a viable business model and establishing effective partnerships with
content providers. The content providers play a major role in the distribution of
Access coverage need to be maximized. Roaming agreement is crucial to
5.5 Implications On Electronic Government (EG) in Malaysia
The selling point of 3G lays in its features of high speed (bigger bandwidth), always-on,
geographical spread, multiple delivery channel (mobile phone, PDA etc.) and mobility.
With these features, there is a possibility that 3G could be utilized to meet or address
some of the current EG’s expectations and issues face by the Government of Malaysia.
1. Bringing the e-Services application to the palm of the citizen
E-services will no longer be restricted to wired devices like kiosks, PCs,
telephone, fax or interactive TV. With 3G (maybe 2G or 2.5G), the mobile
cellular phone or the PDA will allow citizen to pay summons, bills and etc
anywhere and anytime in mobility.
2. An alternative to non-availability of wired communication services
There are numerous cases where dial-up or leased lines services could not be
provided to EG pilot sites (both in urban and remote locations) for the roll-out of
EG projects due to the inavailability of communication infrastructure. An
alternative way of providing connectivity services to those sites could be the
usage of 3G technology.
6.0 Summary View On 3G
3G will represent the following :
3G can be thought of as 2.5G services such as GPRS plus entertainment
(games, video, mobile multimedia) plus new terminals. 3G brings with it
significantly more bandwidth, whereas, GPRS terminals will have a
similar range of form factors as today’s 2G phones do, many 3G terminals
will be video centric. Most 3G terminals will be dual mode 2G/ 3G in the
There is a clear business case for investing in 3G for existing network
operators that are facing congested 2G networks. Voice traffic over 3G
networks will be the cash cow that supports and ensures the 3G business
case can pay for itself. The main positive (rather than defensive) reason
for mobile network operators to secure 3G network licenses is to solve
capacity issues in terms of enabling far greater call capacity than today’s
digital mobile networks allow.
Non-voice (data) traffic will also be huge, with new mobile multimedia
applications such as mobile postcards, movies and music driving new
applications and services alongside corporate applications. Applications
and services available through the Internet, intranet and extranet will drive
the interest in and traffic on 3G networks.
Providing that network operators adopt an open model to all Internet
traffic, the business case for 3G, fuelled by both greater data and voice
traffic is clear. Mobile Streams is confident that the business case for
winning and rolling out a 3G network is compelling. If the network
operator insists upon a closed model in which data traffic is funnelled
primarily through its own in-house portal or limits access to its customers
for e-Commerce and other Internet services, the business case is
Third Generation technology is essential- think about the huge change that
will happen in the next five years from today’s rudimentary and crude text
services such as Short Message Service to moving video clips.
It is often assumed that early adopters will be corporate customers for 3G,
but Mobile Streams expects that consumer electronics devices, as their
name suggests, will appeal to consumer markets and they will have 3G
built in. Mobile multimedia- games, entertainment and the like are much
more consumer oriented than suited for sober suited business people.
Mobile Streams expects 3G to be a consumer revolution as well as a
Many people will not have a fixed phone at home. One thing preventing
this until now has been the slow speed of mobile data in 2G (and even so
called 2.5G technology) that has made Internet access the principle
application for home phones.
There will be a lot of suppliers of mobile handheld computer software
suppliers (Palm, Symbian, Microsoft), Japanese companies, information
appliance and IT suppliers enter the global mobile terminal market.
Mobile enabled devices will proliferate as all (portable) consumer
electronics devices get mobile communications (and short range wireless
communications) technology built-in. The successful handset vendors will
be those that can deliver new products rapidly and reliably. In a non-
portable sense, even fridges are being fitted with Bluetooth short-range
Given the fragmented market for wireless phones, alliances and mergers
between Korean, Japanese, European and American mobile phone and
consumer electronics manufacturers will continue and accelerate since few
if any companies have all the enabling technologies in-house from video
to camera to mobile to interfaces. Smaller players in all of these sectors
will continue to consolidate, as companies such as Sagem and Benefon
(with data skills and location centric smart phones respectively) are
acquired to gain better distribution for their technologies.
3G terminals will be significantly more complex than today’s GSM
phones, because of the need to support video, more storage, more
interfaces, multiple modes, new applications and new software, better
battery life and so on. The biggest single inhibitor of take up of new
services based on Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), High Speed
Circuit Switched Data (HSCSD) and General Packet Radio Service
(GPRS) has already proven to be a lack of handsets. Most technology
stages in the data evolution path for GSM from today to 3G require a new
handset. Once again we see that terminals are mission critical and their
timely volume availability will be crucial factor in determining when 3G
is a success.
Partnerships will increasingly develop between Internet, IT and IP
companies, traditional mobile communications vendors and consumer
electronics manufacturers. Different regions have different strengths and
are likely to leverage them through strategic alliances.
From a network operator technology point of view, the introduction of
packet data services such as General Packet Radio Service (GPRS- an
entry level mobile packet data service) to circuit switched networks is as
challenging as the move from GPRS to 3G- this is because GPRS is the
first time addition of packet capability to a circuit switched network,
whereas 3G is the addition of more packets. 3G substantially enhances the
complexity of the mobile network in terms of the number of platforms
where customer data is held, messaging infrastructure to support the
Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) bandwidth, terminals and
applications that will be used and so on.
From an end user point of view, the move from GPRS to 3G is also much
more revolutionary than the move from Second Generation data services
to GPRS. GPRS allows the mobile network to catch up with the data
bandwidths available over
Concerns have been raised about the third generation mobile phone service, which is
being rolled out in a world first in Japan. Japan Telecommunication Company, DoCoMo
has rolled out the service, allowing consumers to watch videos, download material from
the Internet and video conferencing on their mobiles. It has opened up a new world of
telecommunications. However, companies involved should be warned of the huge risk in
investing in the 3G. Trials of 3G by several operators have seen some teething problems
and consumers have expressed concerns about the high cost of the new technology.
Lesson from Hong Kong, which was made, known in the Third-Generation (3G) Mobile
World Summit, Japan in January 2002 was that mobile services should be first built on
existing 2G or 2.5G digital networks. The next step will only be the 3G networks when
the demand and requirement for higher bandwidth has arrived. It was also proven that the
mobile services in the Philippines were running well on the 2G technology.
However, expanded Internet access is going to change societies around the world as the
Internet has become a major driving force in the economic expansion of most countries -
offering new opportunities in education, healthcare, and commerce. The Internet will
significantly change Asia and Europe as more people come on-line through the use of
third generation wireless services. In summary, the Internet is going wireless, and
Malaysia should be aggressive in the 3G race if we wish to remain competitive. Work has
already begun on the development of fourth generation (4G) technologies in Japan.
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2002, M. Buddhikot, G. Chandranmenon, S. Han, Y. W. Lee, S. Miller, L. Salgarelli
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