Monday, July 25, 2005

FLO Forum Established to Promote Forward Link Only Technology

The FLO Forum, a new non-profit industry association, has been established by key players in the wireless industry in order to promote the development of products and services related to the delivery of advanced multimedia services to wireless devices around the world using "FLO" (Forward Link Only) technology.

The FLO technology was designed specifically for a terrestrial mobile multimedia environment, making its performance characteristics ideally suited for use in cellular handset operation.

Founding members include Amoi, BBEF, Harris, Huawei, Korea Telecom, KYOCERA, LG Electronics, LG Telecom, MediaFLO USA, Pantech & Curitel, QUALCOMM, Roundbox, SANYO, Sharp and ZTE.

The FLO Forum, to be headquartered in Fremont, Calif., will work with regional and global industry consortia, regulatory bodies and designated standards organizations in support of the standardization of FLO technologies, and develop equipment compliance and certification processes for FLO products.

  • In March 2005, QUALCOMM announced plans to make the air interface specification for its FLO (Forward Link Only) technology available to an industry-led group for the purpose of bringing a cooperative specification to standards bodies for ratification. The FLO technology was designed specifically for a mobile multimedia environment and exhibits performance characteristics suited ideally for use on cellular handsets.

  • FLO uses advanced coding and interleaving to achieve high quality reception at all times, both for real-time content streaming and other data services.

  • In November 2004, QUALCOMM announced plans to deploy and operate a nationwide “mediacast�? network, delivering many channels of high-quality video and audio programming to third-generation mobile phones at mass market prices. The nationwide mediacasting network will deliver multimedia content to wireless mobile devices in the 700 MHz spectrum for which QUALCOMM holds licenses across the U.S. It will be based on QUALCOMM's "FLO" (Forward Link Only) technology and use the MediaFLO media distribution system for content aggregation, delivery and viewing. The network could support 50-100 national and local content channels, including up to 15 live streaming channels and numerous clip-cast and audio channels using QVGA video at up to 30 frames per second.

  • The mediacast network, which would be operated by QUALCOMM's new subsidiary called MediaFLO, would provide interactive multimedia services to consumers in cooperation with U.S. CDMA2000 and WCDMA (UMTS) operators. MediaFLO will aggregate and distribute the content that is available to all MediaFLO partners and will provide integration of this content with unique content that individual operators provide to maintain their competitive differentiation. MediaFLO would enable the carriers to deliver mobile interactive multimedia to their wireless subscribers without the cost of network deployment and operation.

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