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LG, Samsung unveil DVB-H, Media FLO phones

Posted by inet - 2006-01-04

SEOUL, South Korea — Battling to preempt the world’s mobile broadcasting-enabled phone market, LG Electronics Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. simultaneously announced Monday (Jan. 2) they have developed the first handset models based on the DVB-H and Media FLO mobile broadcasting standards.

LG said in a statement that it will unveil its DVB-H (digital video broadcasting-handheld) and Media FLO (forward link only) phones at the 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week.

The DVB-H standard, developed by Nokia Corp, supports wireless communications frameworks such as GSM, GPRS and W-CDMA, which collectively cover 70 percent of the global mobile telecommunications service market.

LG said that unlike the existing DVB-H terminals based on so-called Smart Phone technology, its handset model receives QVGA-level DVB-H broadcasting content.

It added its Media FLO phone was designed to satisfy the Qualcomm-led Media FLO standard based on the synchronous 3G mobile telecommunications technology, dubbed CDMA 2000 1X EV-DO.

LG expected its Media FLO phone to get a boost in the United States as Verizon Wireless, the second-biggest mobile phone operator in the country, plans to launch Media FLO-based broadcasting services in September.

Shortly after LG’s announcement, Samsung Electronics, the world's third-largest handset maker, also said that it has developed its own Media FLO phones, also based on the CDMA 2000 1X EV-DO technology, and will demonstrate them at CES.

Samsung claims that it has completed developing its mobile handset line-up geared to all broadcasting standards.

There are currently four mobile broadcasting standards in the world– South Korea’s digital multimedia broadcasting (DMB), Media FLO of the U.S., DVB-H of Europe and Japan’s ISDB-T. The Japanese technology is only for domestic use.

Leading the world’s mobile broadcasting services, South Korea launched satellite and terrestrial DMB in May and December, respectively, last year.

The two Korean mobile phone makers’ neck-and-neck competition reflects their aggressive move to make inroads into the European and American markets where mobile broadcasting services are poised to kick off this year.

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