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NXTComm: Moto, VZ Talk 4G & TV

CHICAGO -- NXTcomm -- Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) CEO, Ivan Seidenberg, and Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT) CEO, Ed Zander spent, their keynote addresses this morning coloring in the big picture about the increasing speeds of wired and wireless networks and all the wonderful services that will enable, such as mobile TV, video, and music.

Seidenberg said -- as part of the evolution of its broadband wireless networking capabilities -- that the company is planning to move to fourth generation (4G) technology within a few years. "We'll be ready for 4G by the end of the decade," Seidenberg told the crowd.

Seidenberg didn't say anything about what specific technology the company might use. Its network currently covers 200 million people in the U.S. with its CDMA EV-DO (evolution, data only) 3G network, and the company is planning to deploy a Rev A upgrade this year, which will crank data transfer speeds up to a -- theoretical -- 3-Mbit/s maximum. (See Nortel Revs Up CDMA and Duo Rev Up CDMA.)

There are a couple of different CDMA variants that could become 4G networking technologies. One of the most popular appears to be adaptive modulation MC-CDMA, which combines CDMA with multi-antenna Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFMD) for better radio performance in cities and other densely networked areas.

Verizon's major CDMA rival in the U.S., Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), has opted for mobile WiMax as its path to 4G, and Verizon could also completely change technology tracks. The Number two mobile operator has always been a little more conservative about network upgrades than its smaller rival Sprint, however.

Seidenberg also talked up the firm's new fixed/mobile convergence (FMC) offerings for business people and claimed that phone and voicemail convergence is just the beginning: "We used to say that there were three things you should never leave the house without -- your wallet, your keys, and your cellphone -- soon you might be able to just take your phone." (See Verizon Intros FMC.)

Zander's Square Eyes
Motorola's CEO, Ed Zander, used his segment of the keynote to talk about the incredible growth of TV, video, and especially user-generated content on the net -- largely through YouTube -- and over the phone. Motorola's job, he said, is to enable users to create more content -- on their phones and elsewhere -- and deliver it faster.

"You are a TV station," he told the crowd. [Ed note: Sadly, it's the Napping Channel.]

To this end, Motorola has added a click-and-video feature to its forthcoming RAZR 2 phone. Users will be able to make videos even while on a call and even show the person at the other end of the line what they are seeing, Zander said. The new phone, which is due to launch in July in Asia, will also feature two hours of onboard video storage. (See The Next Cut.)

It's all part of what Zander calls the "mobilization, personalization, and socialization" of content. So expect more silly videos of cats doing stupid tricks to arrive on your phone very soon.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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