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martes, 29 de julio de 2008

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martes, 29 de julio de 2008



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The Mobile and Wireless Communications Technology Platform

Over the past decade, European industry has established a clear global industrial and technology leadership in the field of mobile communications. Mobile communications is one of the few technology sectors in which Europe has a clear global leadership position. This success in global markets was developed from the results of EU-funded collaborative research on second and third generation mobile technologies, which formed the basis of successful global standards. In fact, the scale of this success is now such that the economic impact of mobile and wireless sector is now greater than that of the Internet.

However, the potential of mobile and wireless communications to stimulate growth and re-vitalise economic sectors is far from being exhausted. We are now beginning a second phase of growth in the mobile and wireless sector as mobile applications and services are incorporated into business processes and all aspects of daily life. In recognition of this, Asian countries, such as China and Korea, are making substantial efforts to overtake Europe in this strategically crucial domain. The USA dominates in the short range wireless technology sector and invests it's defence budget in supporting technological advances A serious investment in advanced applications based on new technology in Europe is now required to maintain and further build the European mobile and wireless sector.

Innovative applications centered on user requirements and drawing on a range of technologies and services, relying on a grid of communication resources will characterise the future wireless world. The wireless environment will accommodate a range of technologies and services including mobile communications, W-LAN (Wireless Local Area Network), broadcasting and home networks. Wireless-optimised applications for eGovernment, eHealth and business process will lead to further dramatic improvements in productivity and economic growth. The trend towards any service, or application, over any network and using any device, is becoming possible due to rapid parallel advances in technologies in the IT, broadcasting and mobile sectors. Citizens will benefit from the "always with you" quality of services and applications and social contact will be enhanced and extended and services and applications become intuitive and easy to use.

In order to maintain Europe's position in the global market for mobile and wireless systems in the 2010-2015 time horizon, it will be necessary to develop large-scale European approaches to system research and development, and to mobile services and applications in the context of digital convergence.

In this context, the Platform will define and implement a comprehensive research agenda in the mobile and wireless sector to be conducted in Europe, on the basis of a strong co-ordination of the national research efforts as well as the collaboration of key research programmes from other regions of the world. Peer-to-peer relations with Asian and American research programs should be established to facilitate the emergence of an early consensus and hence to paving the way for successful global standards.


Primary Technical, Economic and Political Justification for action

Technical: Mobile and wireless communications requires end-to-end compatible solutions encompassing not only a range of constituent technical solutions but also a consistent context for their use as part of the communication grid, the services and the applications. This implies the systematic collaboration of all sector actors within a consistent framework and a shared vision.
Economic: Economics will play a key role in this collaboration. The massive investments and long lead-times necessitate a large home market, while the need for inter-working implies economising on the number of competing options, and the need to master technology requires an optimised use of human resources and research facilities.
The importance of mobile communications to society at large, citizens and business, cannot be underestimated. The European economy has benefited from the take-up of GSM over the past decade and the evolution towards broadband services over mobile networks will continue to drive economic growth in the coming decade. The Platform has so far outlined both regulatory and research policy issues that need to be addressed in order to provide for a continued growth and take-up of mobile broadband services in Europe and beyond.

The Internet has been unprecedented in its impact on the world community of industries, institutions and individuals. The mobile communications industry is now grasping the opportunity to add mobility to Internet accessibility, effectively allowing citizens to carry the power of the Internet with them anywhere at any time and the convergence of wireless and Internet usage is already underway. The potential for market growth is unlimited. There are today more mobile handsets than PCs connected to the Internet. Global wireless subscribers are expected to increase from 1.3 billion* (Dec 2003) to over 1.8 billion in 2007 and employment in the mobile and wireless sector is expected to grow from the current level of 4 million people to 10 million people in 2010. On average, 80% of the European population currently use mobile handsets. Since the growth in the mobile communications sector is likely to be driven by the offering of innovative and easy to use mobile broadband services, the challenge is now to foster the development of services that bring real added-value to both individual citizens and to businesses and to provide appropriate network coverage and applications in rural areas.

Political: Mobile and wireless communications have created unprecedented possibilities for people to communicate and the sector has been a key driver of economic growth. Europe has for some time been leading this development based on a timely initiative of administrations, the scale of the EU market, a consistent regulatory approach, as well as considerable industrial and R&D investment. Building on the success in Europe the success on global markets followed. However, much has changed since GSM was introduced including user requirements, markets, competition, regulations & policies and the technology options. Within Europe the single most important change is the enlargement to 25 countries, with other countries wishing to join in coming years. These changes represent both challenge and opportunity. The enlargement is a challenge in terms of overcoming constraints to provide the communications and mobility essential for cohesion and economic development. It is an opportunity to use new technology on the scale of the enlarged EU. For this to happen, a concerted effort addressing the key issues will be needed.

*Of these 1.3 billion, nearly one billion are GSM subscribers

Activities (existing and planned in short-term)

    - Systematic development of the strategy with a progressively growing involvement of sector actors
    - Establishment of links with related activities and sectors e.g. broadcasting,
    - Active efforts to bring together national and local authorities to promote an environment conducive to the development of the mobile and wireless communications sector in Europe
    - Refinement of the Strategic Research Agenda for research and development in mobile and wireless systems beyond 3G
    - Investigation of the legal frameworks that could be used as a basis for the organisation of the Platform research.

Specific Deliverables (medium to long term)

    - Platform to sponsor a proposal for a Specific Support Action still under the FP6 IST programme as a bridge towards FP7.
    - Establish peer-to-peer relations with Asian & American research programmes.