Monthly Archives: October 2011

Is Nokia Now Out Of Hibernation? 5

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Today the markets closed with Nokia increasing its stock value by about 7%. Could this be the comeback everyone had been waiting for? Will this latest string of Windows phones get Nokia back in the race?nokia lumia 710 Is Nokia Now Out Of Hibernation?

A lot of criticism had been thrown towards Nokia, especially by the Nokia loyalists who have since the beginning of time had a strong aversion to anything Windows. Despite being one myself I must admit I secretly believe in the strategy Steve Elop laid down for Nokia a year back. Adopting Windows as the lead OS for its smart phone line-up was a controversial choice. But the message was clear: adopting Android would make Nokia just another commodity device. As much as Android has brought life back in to the Smartphone market, it has also managed to fade the boundaries between traditionally distinct brands. Essentially all android devices feel the same when it comes to the look and feel of their OS. Nokia feared that adopting Android would make it indistinguishable amongst its many rivals. Bold move by Mr. Elop, but truly in line with the Nokia Ideology, the brand is supreme and that sells.

nokia lumia 800 xl 600x400 Is Nokia Now Out Of Hibernation?

Once you manage to discolor your bias against the Microsoft Corporation, the Windows Mobile OS is not really as bad as it sounds. The OS is evolving and will get better with time and has the potential to rival its contenders. Coupled with Nokia it will cater to a niche market, has the weight of XBox behind it and will soon allow people to make as many folders as they wish in their device. Yes, it did take some time before the copy paste functionality was released but it is nothing like its predecessors.

And what of the much talked about Meego based Nokia N9? Followed by raving reviews it’s guilty of making Nokia rivals skip a beat since its launch. According to Nokia insiders even though the N9 is rumored as the one and only device on this fascinating Linux based OS, this does not mean that it is a dead end track, there is a program office that will maintain the OS and continue working on applications and updates for it. However the relatively smaller footprints of Meego developers might make it challenging for app savvy users to feel comfortable adopting it. If things go bust on the Windows front, Nokia still have this ace in its back pocket.

Will Nokia succeed? Chances are yes it will, it would be unwise to underestimate Finnish SISU – Read: toughness, hardiness and resilience.

The Unsung Heroes In Mobile Space 10

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I travel a lot for my job, If ever asked, I tell people I work for ST-Ericsson, the first response I would get from them would be “Ahh.. Sony Ericsson I have this phone, its nice but what should I buy for my son?”. I listen on and give my opinions based on the facts I know about the Industry.

GSM 3G LTE Network The Unsung Heroes In Mobile Space

The general population knows little or nothing about mobile platform vendors who manufacture GSM, CDMA, 3G and LTE chipsets for mobile phones. When we talk mobiles the first buzz words we hear are IPhone, Nokia, Samsung or Android. Even the leading websites on technology do not discuss much about the evolution of this product family. Qualcomm is a mobile platform vendor, a leader in the mobile chipset industry having total assets of about 30 Billion USD and a consistent sales leader for fabless companies since 2003. Other players in the mobile chipset market are ST-Ericsson, Infineon Technologies, Texas Instruments, Renesas and MEdiaTEk who all compete with each other for rights to sell to mobile phone manufacturers.

Mobile platform vendors or mobile chipset manufacturers play a critical role in the telecommunications eco system. A major portion of the current UMTS air interface is based on Qualcomm patents, and royalties from these patents form a big part of Qualcomm’s revenue. Many of the developments in the mobile sector have been driven by mobile chipset manufacturers like these.

component suppliers 600x375 The Unsung Heroes In Mobile Space

As 3GPP evolves and new features are developed in each 3GPP release, mobile platform vendor work closely with network vendors like Ericsson and Alcatel Lucent to implement new functionality and test features with one another, contributing to the evolution of mobile communications. This is a critical partnership, to test or make use of any new functionality on the radio interface one must have a UE/mobile phone to support it and without devices supporting that functionality the development of new features in the network becomes meaningless.

In any mobile phone there are essentially two components the application processor and the mobile (wireless) chipset. Mobile phone companies churn out a number of models by combining different types of application processors with mobile chipset. The fastest mobile phones do not necessarily use the most advanced mobile chipset. Take the example of the latest IPhone, with a dual core application processor it offers a remarkable user interface and power to support a number of graphic intensive applications. The mobile chipset however in terms of technology is an inexpensive legacy product only supporting 14Mbps eclipsed by the much more advanced 3GPP release 7 capable Samsung Galaxy SII which supports upto 21Mbps. This has its benefits allowing Apple to keep its prices low and still impress an average consumer who is unaware of limitation of the hardware.

LTE platform ST Ericsson The Unsung Heroes In Mobile Space

LTE Platform. Image from stericsson.com

One justification given for not using the most technologically advanced mobile chipsets is that networks don’t support higher bitrates anyways. As explained earlier this is a dynamic that changes rapidly; both mobile chipset manufacturers and network vendors are constantly working together to develop an ecosystem which complies with the latest 3GPP releases. This is not only profitable but also allows mobile networks to offer greater capacities, wider coverage areas and of course higher bitrates.

So the next time you are out there exploring the latest trends in the mobile phone market do remember without the mobile chipset manufacturers the mobile phone is neither mobile nor a phone.

Telecom Pros in Focus : Interview With Senior IOT Engineer Kishor Kumar Gurusiddappa 13

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Our today’s guest is the very experienced telecoms engineer Kishor Kumar Gurusiddappa, he specialises in the telecom industry with a number of years of experience of working both for Network and UE vendors.

Though he had always been interested in the Telecommunications and the dynamics of the industry, he himself calls his introduction to the telecom business an accident, the industry was in a state of recession when he graduated, so he started his professional career as a teacher in Embedded controllers and Operating Systems for Undergraduate level studies Siddaganga Institute of Technology in India, he got his first step in the telecom business when he joined Hughes Software Systems (Lucent technologies) in 2003 as a development and field support engineer, and there has been no turning back since.

Now Kishor works as a senior consultant in the customer support organization in ST Ericsson, he calls him self a professional tester, he lives in Malmö, Sweden with his wife who is also a software engineer. Lets get to know Kishor a little better.

How would you define what IOT is?

Kishore: Connecting different domains and making sure that everything works as a product in the system.

Is there a lot of travelling while doing IOT?

Kishor: Yes, there is a lot of travelling, two years back as an IOT engineer I have travelled a lot , but it has reduced since i have joined the customer support organization.

How many frequent flyer miles have you collected by now?

Kishor (laughing) Unfortunately not, I had a few frequent flier memberships but haven’t followed up it.

Is there one quality that an IOT tester could not be without?

Kishor: An IOT engineer should be first and foremost self motivated, willing to learn and improve himself, you will see a lot of problem, even outside your technical field, it can be easy to get de-motivated, but this is a part of the assignment, so it’s important as an IOT engineer to be prepared to deal with issues arising anywhere while testing.

What is the most fun thing about your work?

Kishor: What is fun is that every day I get to see a lot of new issues, many challenges and new requests coming from customers and from people within the team and this is what drives me.

The Specification for 3GPP is quite large, do you have a favorite?

Kishor: My favourite and most used is 3GPP TS 25.331, 24.008 and 25.0211.

Most memorable moment at IOT?

Kishor: In a previous job we were doing field testing in downtown Atlanta and were ambushed by the cops who had come prepared to diffuse a potentially hostile situation outside the Hilton involving suspicious Asian men working on unidentified electronic equipment.

Do you have any tips for engineers looking forward to be IOT testers?

Kishor: He has to be well versed in the technical aspect of the field and should be ready to take up the challenges from broad area of the field, it is maybe not for someone who is does not have his heart in it.

What do you do to wind down?

Kishor: I swim regularly and enjoying singing and drawing, I am an artist at heart.

Do you follow the trends in the telecomm industry?

Kishor: I follow the trends only specific to the technology, I do not follow phones release and things like that.

What is the most noteworthy innovation you’ve seen in the telecomm business that in your opinion has changed the face of mobile phone business.

Kishor: 3G has changed things quite a lot, GSM was already there when i started working, and I saw people struggling with very small bitrates which are not suited for the use of many applications, but after 3G the rise of the smart phones has been amazing, it was unconceivable when we were in university.

Does your wife know what a UE is?

Kishor: She doesn’t.. she knows what a mobile is. It is amazing, when I was back at my village away from the technical environment and was surrounded by people who know how to use a mobile but do not know ‘how’ a mobile works, I tried explaining to them how among a million people your phone rings when someone calls you, they were awestruck and look at me as if I was a god.

How do you spend the day after an IOT session when you’re travelling abroad?

Kishor: I like to go out and seeing places and experiencing foods at different restaurants.

Favorite gadget?

Kishor: The Samsung tabs is something I bought recently and enjoying it.

If you were not in telecoms business where would you be?

Kishor: I am an artistic guy, I like to paint, I enjoy music and reading history.. somehow my circumstances took me in a different direction.

Favorite Science fiction product?

Kishor: I enjoy historical documentary and movies which are close to reality, not a big fan of unbelievable science fiction.

Whats the next big innovation you see in the coming 10 years or so?

Kishor: Telepathy is something I look forward too.