Telecommunications behemoth China Telecom's consolidation of its CDMA business will help bring handset prices down globally and boost the technology, especially in emerging markets, Flavio Mansi, VP for Latin America and the Caribbean of chipset maker Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM), told BNamericas.
On June 2, 2008, China Telecom announced it would acquire China Unicom's CDMA2000 business and network for 110bn yuans (US$15.86bn) in cash.
China Telecom already had CDMA450, which it is using to expand into sparsely populated areas, and it will use the CDMA2000 in the 850MHz band for higher density areas, Mansi said.
""China Telecom said to the phone manufacturers that we want to have all our phones made with capacity for 450MHz and 850MHz. This means that the huge amount of phones in China are all going to have 450 as well. And with the enormous economies of scale, that will bring down the cost for these phones worldwide,"" Mansi said.
""I think that is good news for the world of 450,"" he added. China Telecom provides telephone services to 216mn subscribers as of April 2008 and broadband internet access to over 38mn subscribers.
Latin America has seen news of several deployments of CDMA450 this year including Suriname state incumbent Telesur, while Telefónica del Perú won a license to deploy telecoms services using the 450MHz band in capital Lima and the neighboring port Callao.
Regarding CDMA in general, Mansi said that despite the fact that there are more HSDPA-based 3G networks in Latin America than networks based on CDMA2000, CDMA is still very much alive around the world, especially in emerging markets like India and Africa.
""The operators are asking us to develop micro processors for multi-technology in devices with LTE and HSDPA, as well as LTE and CDMA2000... If the industry stops investing in the technology, our investigation will stop. But if it continues investing and improving, so will we,"" Mansi said.