3g- Adding a new dimension to our lives

 This post is brought to you in response to 3G life contest by DOCOMO

Let us start by learning basic things about 3g...

What is 3g?
International Mobile Telecommunications-2000 (IMT—2000), better known as 3G or 3rd Generation, is a generation of standards for mobile phones and mobile telecommunications services fulfilling specifications by the International Telecommunication Union. Application services include wide-area wireless voice telephone, mobile Internet access, video calls and mobile TV, all in a mobile environment. Compared to the older 2G and 2.5G standards, a 3G system must allow simultaneous use of speech and data services, and provide peak data rates of at least 200 kbit/s according to the IMT-2000 specification. Recent 3G releases, often denoted 3.5G and 3.75G, also provide mobile broadband access of several Mbit/s to laptop computers and smartphones.

history of 3g
The first pre-commercial 3G network was launched by NTT DoCoMo in Japan branded FOMA, in May 2001 on a pre-release of W-CDMA technology. The first commercial launch of 3G was also by NTT DoCoMo in Japan on 1 October 2001, although it was initially somewhat limited in scope; broader availability was delayed by apparent concerns over reliability. The second network to go commercially live was by SK Telecom in South Korea on the 1xEV-DO technology in January 2002. By May 2002 the second South Korean 3G network was by KT on EV-DO and thus the Koreans were the first to see competition among 3G operators.

The first European pre-commercial network was at the Isle of Man by Manx Telecom, the operator then owned by British Telecom, and the first commercial network in Europe was opened for business by Telenor in December 2001 with no commercial handsets and thus no paying customers. These were both on the W-CDMA technology.

The first commercial United States 3G network was by Monet Mobile Networks, on CDMA2000 1x EV-DO technology, but this network provider later shut down operations. The second 3G network operator in the USA was Verizon Wireless in October 2003 also on CDMA2000 1x EV-DO. AT&T Mobility is also a true 3G network, having completed its upgrade of the 3G network to HSUPA.

The first pre-commercial demonstration network in the southern hemisphere was built in Adelaide, South Australia by m.Net Corporation in February 2002 using UMTS on 2100 MHz. This was a demonstration network for the 2002 IT World Congress. The first commercial 3G network was launched by Hutchison Telecommunications branded as Three in March 2003.

Emtel Launched the first 3G network in Africa

By June 2007, the 200 millionth 3G subscriber had been connected. Out of 3 billion mobile phone subscriptions worldwide this is only 6.7%. In the countries where 3G was launched first – Japan and South Korea – 3G penetration is over 70%.In Europe the leading country is Italy with a third of its subscribers migrated to 3G. Other leading countries by 3G migration include UK, Austria, Australia and Singapore at the 20% migration level. A confusing statistic is counting CDMA2000 1x RTT customers as if they were 3G customers. If using this definition, then the total 3G subscriber base would be 475 million at June 2007 and 15.8% of all subscribers worldwide.

Applications of 3g
The bandwidth and location information available to 3G devices gives rise to applications not previously available to mobile phone users. Some of the applications are:
Mobile TV – a provider redirects a TV channel directly to the subscriber's phone where it can be watched.
Video on demand – a provider sends a movie to the subscriber's phone.
Video conferencing – subscribers can see as well as talk to each other.
Tele-medicine – a medical provider monitors or provides advice to the potentially isolated subscriber.
Location-based services – a provider sends localized weather or traffic conditions to the phone, or the phone allows the subscriber to find nearby businesses or friends..

3g in India

In 2008, India entered into the 3G arena with the launch of 3G enabled Mobile and Data services by Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL) in Bihar (Patna). BSNL is the first Mobile operator in India to launch 3G services. Later, MTNL launched 3G in Mumbai & Delhi. Government owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has already been provided with a 3G license and has been operating its services in 380 cities by the end of March 2010. Nation wide auction of 3G wireless spectrum in April 2010 was announced. The auction fetched huge sums of money for the Government of India, estimated to be around Rs 35,000/- Crore ($7.6 billion). The total revenue collected by the Government was nearly Rs 1,06,000 Crore ($23 billion). Private provider Tata Docomo has announced the services to be launched during Diwali Season in November 2010. Airtel and Vodafone expected to provide its 3G service from January 2011.