BIRMINGHAM,UK., June 27, 2000 - The world's first commercial General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) network, launched on 22nd June 2000 by BT Cellnet in the UK and enabled by Motorola, Inc. (NYSE:MOT) and Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) is given its first public showcase today at the UK's Networks 2000 show.
The 'always on, always connected', high speed mobile data service is commercially available to BT Cellnet corporate customers, and will deliver a wide range of Internet services to mobile devices, including access to email and scheduling applications. BT Cellnet launched its GPRS service with Motorola's Timeport p7389i GPRS phones* - the world's first GPRS handsets.
Visitors to BT Cellnet's stand no.18 R100 at Networks 2000 can experience a range of services over the GPRS network. BT Cellnet is exhibiting its first application, PocketNet Office, specifically designed for GPRS users. Developed for large organisations, it will enable business users to access the Internet, a corporate intranet, email and LAN (Local Area Network) files while on the move - demonstrating the reality of genuine mobility.
Specifically for the Networks 2000 show, Motorola and Cisco have enabled proof of concept demonstrations running over the BT Cellnet GPRS network to highlight the potential of the service.
Location-based services provide a wealth of timely and relevant information to the mobile user, providing information on demand directly to the mobile device and appropriate to the users' location. For the Networks 2000 demonstration, visitors can check out the location of the nearest doctor, dentist or cash dispenser, the nearest restaurant or hotel, timetables for Birmingham International Airport and train stations, and road traffic status. Your GPRS mobile device knows where you are, even if you may not!
GPRS is also capable of carrying MPEG4 video, opening up a wealth of possible applications including video conferencing, surveillance and remote monitoring via the mobile terminal. The GPRS live video camera demonstration was enabled by California-based PacketVideo's MPEG4 compliant software-based encoding, decoding, and transmission management products, which enable a variety of content and rich media applications to be delivered to mobile devices anytime, anywhere. Content was transported across BT Cellnet's GPRS network from web cameras, transmitted to a PDA client equipped with PacketVideo's PVPlayer decoding software, connected via infrared link to Motorola's Timeport GPRS p7389i handset.
Jeff Gordon, Motorola corporate vice president and general manager of Motorola's Networks Solutions Sector (NSS) for Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: "GPRS is here and now. Together with BT Cellnet and our strategic alliance partner, Cisco, we have enabled the world's first GPRS network - a total wireless Internet solution for true mobility in both voice and data - and the proof of the promised new generation of communications."
Peter Richardson, sales and marketing director of BT Cellnet, commented, "GPRS deployment has been a major initiative for BT Cellnet, and by working with Motorola and Cisco, we were able to bring the new service to market on schedule. As it has been developed with the business market in mind, Networks 2000 is the ideal platform for us to demonstrate GPRS to early adopters who can see the clear benefitsthat GPRS can deliver."
"Cisco and Motorola are key to driving deployments of GPRS technologies today. As a result, operators like BT Cellnet are building a foundation of success for 3G," said Steve Steinhilber, vice president of Cisco's Strategic Alliances. "As operators develop initial service offerings with GPRS, they are gaining valuable data competence and IP expertise - all of which will be applicable in 3G. BT Cellnet is ready for the future."
BT Cellnet achieved the world's first live GPRS call over a live network in November 1999, enabled by the Motorola/Cisco GPRS solution. Motorola's contract with BT Cellnet is for the countrywide implementation of Motorola's total Aspira GPRS network solution, including Motorola's Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN), and the Gateway GPRS Support Node (GGSN) from Cisco. Motorola has supplied mobile network solutions to BT Cellnet since 1984.
The Motorola/Cisco GPRS architecture can be implemented over an existing GSM network, giving operators investment protection over existing infrastructure. Motorola's GSM infrastructure systems are GPRS-ready, requiring only a software load and PCU addition, with no modifications to existing hardware. Offering controlled evolution to third generation mobile communications, the Motorola/Cisco GPRS data solution enables operators to take advantage of many new revenue opportunities. Cisco and Motorola are driving market growth and developing applications and value-added services to provide operators with innovative and competitive offerings for their subscriber base.