Nokia starts public UMA trial

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NokiaNokia started public Unlicensed Mobile Access pilot over Wireless LAN in Oulu, Finland last week. Lasting two months, the trial will have fifty families from the city of Oulu testing the UMA functionality on brand new Nokia 6136 phones. The 6136 integrates UMA technology to allow for seamless handover of voice and data connections between GSM cellular and WLAN networks — essentially combining the benefits of mobile and fixed landline through voice over WLAN.

“UMA technology truly brings simplicity in the usage of voice over IP,” says Peter Ropke, Senior Vice President, Mobile Phones R&D, Nokia. “This pilot project is an important step forward in bringing functional UMA technology to the mass market. Both operators and consumers will be able to garner the benefits of this new technology.”

UMA technology makes it possible for users to seamlessly roam and handover between local area networks and wide area networks using the same dual-mode device. Instead of constantly communicating with a base station, UMA allows the phone to also make calls through WLAN internet networks. In turn, this will also make it easier and cheaper for operators to expand their area coverage by implementing WLAN hotspots instead of costly base stations.