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Technology

 February 24, 2000
Ericsson New Products Unveiled At CeBIT

 Two new phones, a new type of communicator and the new Ericsson Screen Phone, were presented at the press conference at the CeBIT trade fair in Hanover today. Company President, Kurt Hellström, delivered the news as he stressed the importance of mobile Internet.

WAP will see an impressive growth and within four years there will be 400 million mobile Internet titanium users, with the potential of 600 million users", said Hellström.

The two new phone R310 and A2618 will hit the market mid year. The R310 is Ericsson's second shock resistant and waterproof phone. Hellström hailed the R310 phone as, "the toughest on the market."

The WAP phone, A2618, is fun and colourful, using WAP over SMS technology. It too will be available by the middle of the year. It is the fourth WAP product Ericsson is presenting and the first low-end WAP-phone that offers value for money.

Ericsson's communicator platform brings together a host of modern communication features. The Bluetooth unit boasts WAP, GPRS and HSCSD technologies, a colour touch-screen and Global Positioning System (GPS) functions, to name but a few. "This communicator will support all these future technologies and perhaps any other combination of capital letters that you can think of," joked Hellström.

Perhaps the most striking new product is the Screen Phone, the HS210. With this device a user can browse the Internet, send e-mails and make phone calls simultaneously. The Screen Phone too, has a colour touch screen, or the user can choose to talk to the speakerphone and leave hands free. The Screen Phone was shown now, but will be launched towards the end of the year.

Ericsson expects the home communications market will develop within the next 3 to 5 years reaching a similar size to the home PC market, while the mobile market should overtake the fixed market in around four years' time. Mobile Internet is here now, Hellström stressed. Already today there are 2 billion SMS messages are sent each day, which is a first step towards mobile Internet usage. In Japan the iMode, Japan's equivalent of WAP, is attracting 150,000 new users every week.

"But the real revolution will take place when we see higher data speeds with GPRS, which gives us up to ten times the data speeds today," commented Hellström. GPRS also means your device is always on, without having to dial for Internet connection. He stressed that Ericsson already has taken a leadership roll in over 50 percent of the GPRS contracts in 1999 and will also be a market leader when it comes to delivering end-to-end 3G system.

"At CeBIT we demonstrate the first complete WCDMA radio access network portfolio. This includes the first generation of radio base stations for WCDMA, the RBS 3202. With this portfolio we can assure our customers a full transition to 3G from today's mobile systems." said Hellström.