IMAGINE video-conferencing inside a taxi, watching clips from your favorite tele-novela inside the train, sending captured images of your Boracay adventure straight from the field to your friends in Manila or hearing your latest downloaded music from your cordless MP3.

All these will compose a package of new features, which will soon be available upon the release of the third generation mobile phones or 3G in the market.

The Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS), the 3G version of the current mobile standard Global System for Mobile (GSM) technology, was launched in Japan last May 30, following the release of DoCoMo, the wireless unit of Nippon Telecommunications and Telegraph (NTT), the leading mobile company in Japan. The event has left Europe and the United States behind, which has reportedly spent billions of dollars to develop the phone of the future.

In an article published in Newsweek, Kazunori Ishii, spokesperson for KDDI, one of Japan’s leading mobile operator, is quoted saying, “The beauty of 3G is the cost of efficiency of data transmission, which should help control prices and sustain profits.”

Phone handsets are not yet widely available in the international market, but there have been major drawbacks already, such as the need to set-up thousands of network towers, considered a major health risk for humans.

However, the unit itself seems to have been bogged down by its many features like a combined camera, computer, stereo, and radio which make it consume in minutes what a regular phone’s fully-charged battery could give.

Meanwhile, Nokia, Ericsson and Motorola have also started developing concept phones to be sold in the Asia-Pacific markets.

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Being the text capital of the world for its numerous cellular phone subscribers, the Philippines is likely to give a major boost to this project.

3G is a progression to a communications ideal that still holds to a vague end. But regardless of whether this mobile multimedia appeals or intimidates, 3G will surely revolutionize mobile services to bring more information, more efficiency and more satisfaction for people on the go.


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