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[Opinion] Wi-Bro Technology

Posted November. 16, 2005 08:23,   


Mobile Internet “Wi-Bro (Wireless Broadband)” has been introduced. Wi-Bro makes it possible to enjoy the Internet even while in a car running at the top speed of 120 kilometers per hour. KT is currently operating a bus equipped with this technology in Busan where the APEC summit is being held. Twelve people participating in a video conference can view a large volume of data through their own laptop computers. In the bus, it is possible to exchange data of high quality movies. Samsung Electronics has introduced mobile phones that allow people to talk on the phone while looking at each others’ faces and also able to watch TV.

The “ubiquitous” era when we can log on to the Internet anytime anywhere is just around the corner. “Wi-Bro will change the life of people around the world more dramatically than any other existing technology,” said an official of Samsung Electronics. APEC delegations were stunned by the new technology. They were already surprised by the “paperless” conference hall. At the opening ceremony of Wi-Bro, Chin Dae-je, minister of Information and Communication, said, “I explained this technology while in Russia and Brazil and people there were surprised, saying that there couldn’t be such a thing.” It is no wonder he feels proud of Korean researchers.

Starting next June in Korea, Wi-Bro will be commercialized. Some say that Wi-Bro may not be necessary since wireless Internet is available almost everywhere. However, Korean people, who are recognized as “Internet savvy people” around the world, will surely accept versatile equipment that knows no restriction in area. The proud status as the world’s top nation in term of high speed Internet penetration didn’t come naturally. I am looking forward to seeing the information and telecommunication technologies of Korea spread throughout the world.

What’s better is that Korea’s Wi-Bro technology was confirmed as the international standard and is waiting for the standard to be printed. When this happens, other countries must use Korea’s patent in order to commercialize the technology, which means a substantial income from royalties for Korea. We succeeded in commercializing CDMA technology for the first time in the world, but we have to pay royalties to the U.S.’ Qualcomm because of the lack of source technology. We may be able to overcome the past regret this time with Wi-Bro.

Hong Kwon-hee, Editorial Writer, konihong@donga.com