IP Wireless announces IMB accessory for iPhone and iPad

IPWireless, a pioneer in developing key enabling 3GPP technologies such as Integrated Mobile Broadcast (IMB) and LTE technologies, has announced the launch of an IMB accessory made for the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPad.

The IMB accessory, which relieves network congestion by offloading 3G mobile data such as high quality video, is a small low power device that plugs into a device’s docking connector and allows an array of mobile applications to access multimedia content that will be delivered over a mobile operator’s IMB content delivery network. Subscribers can access the content either live or cache it for later consumption.

The accessory features IPWireless’ core IMB technology and rich media technology from Streammezzo, an Amdocs company.

IMB technology has been endorsed by the GSMA and allows mobile operators to leverage their currently underutilized 3G spectrum assets by overlaying a highly economical content delivery network on top of their existing 3G network.

IMB-enabled networks bypass increasingly congested RAN and core networks, support vastly expanded capacity, and allow popular content and applications to be streamed simultaneously to an unlimited number of devices.

With IMB, mobile operators can deliver live broadcast content, such as TV and digital radio, as well as store top shows, music, eBooks and other popular content in a ‘secure digital content locker’ for consumers to access either instantly or at a time that is convenient to them. Content can be refreshed as often as required, or in real time for time sensitive items such as news or sport-related content, with very high quality, no buffering and with up to 70% less battery usage on devices compared with how video content is currently delivered over 3G networks.

IMB will be capable of broadcasting to an unlimited number of devices approximately 40,000 short form videos, 44,000 full length music tracks, 1,700 TV shows, or over 100,000 video advertisements in a single day. The IMB accessory will also allow operators to target their existing user base who have compatible iPads and iPhones to help alleviate congestion on existing 3G network capacity.

“The amount of mobile data traffic that iPhone and iPad users download and generate is staggering and continues to grow at an exponential rate,” said Dr. Bill Jones, CEO at IPWireless. “We are committed to helping operators and their ecosystem partners use intelligent broadcast as an effective way to handle this explosion in media consumption. The IMB accessory is a compelling product that meets our operator customers’ requirements for managing the current surge in multimedia traffic while providing their subscribers with a significantly better experience than has been provided with prior technology.”

The IMB accessory will first be made available to a limited number of users during the multi-operator IMB UK pilot announced by O2, Orange and Vodafone on 22 June, 2010. The IMB UK pilot will deploy the IMB wireless technology within a little used tranche of 3G spectrum called Time Division Duplex (TDD) spectrum.

The trial will demonstrate how IMB can deliver data intensive services, such as TV and mobile video in a more efficient way. This spectrum already forms part of the 3G licenses held by many European mobile operators, but has remained largely unused because of a lack of appropriate technology. Currently, over 150 operators across 60 countries covering more than half a billion subscribers own the required 5 MHz of TDD spectrum necessary to implement IMB.