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3G Wireless is Here, But Too Complex

Reuters reports that they used to brag about how fast their networks are, but this year's visitors to the world's top wireless trade fest, 3GSM, will have more serious matters to discuss. With 79 percent of British consumers complaining mobile services are getting more complicated in a recent survey, the mobile phone industry is looking more than ever for mass-market services.

Mobile carriers already operate 91 Wideband-CDMA networks around the world, but the 50 million subscribers on these networks with new phones are still a drop in the bucket of the global total of 2.2 billion mobile phone subscribers.

The new networks cost hundreds of billions of euros and they are not being used enough, due to the lack of mass-market services. Data services only generate between 13 and 25 percent of total revenues for most European operators and less than 10 percent for U.S. mobile carriers, with old-fashioned text messaging still generating the bulk of this.

"Mobile media promises to be a major topic of discussion, as operators are looking for the next big thing to entice customers to use 3G networks," said analyst Kenneth Hyers at ABI Research.

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