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A One Phone World?

The CTIA and the Wi-Fi Alliance are teaming to test dualmode cellular/WiFi devices in a move that could eventually lead to "one phone in your life," according to the Alliance.

The industry bodies will work with three labs that are certified to run both CTIA and WiFi tests. They plan to test dualmode handsets for interoperability and performance capabilities over the coming months. Karen Hanley, senior marketing director at the Wi-Fi Alliance, says the joint effort will build on the work her organization has already done on voice-over-WiFi. "Just under 20 handsets have been Wi-Fi certified," Hanley says.



The work will mostly involve testing the radio capabilities of this new class of device. Hanley says that the tests will examine how well the cellular radio performs when the WiFi is in operation and vice versa. This could be an important performance metric as vendors look to get the best range and signal strengh out of these devices.

Hanley says that the CTIA and the Alliance have decided to team up now because the opportunities for dualmode phones are becoming evident.

"Recently we did some polling, asking consumers whether they would prefer to give their home phone or their WiFi network," she says. "Eighty percent of them said they would rather keep their WiFi."

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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