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Life before 3G, plus panic
01 March 2001
Mobile telecoms, CEOs need to wring further revenues from 2G, implement 2.5G and then pay for 3G licences and infrastructure. How will they do it, Barnaby Page asks
Telecoms execs, repent: the end is nigh. Well, maybe. For the outpouring of doom and gloom over the prospects for third-generation mobile services at last month's GSM World Congress in Cannes may just have been an equal and opposite reaction to the extremist optimism that preceded it.
Most notoriously, "we're facing a situation of where an industry is heading for bankruptcy... before even a 3G call is made," said Intel vice president and general manager Hans Geyer. And while others were more sanguine, few were optimistic.
At the core of the panic is a realization that while European network operators in particular have spent heavily on 3G licences, and incurred vast debt doing so, they still have to implement the services — and find a way to keep the wolf...
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