Tuesday, September 15, 2009

4G Wireless Network Roaming Challenges Cited at WCAI Symposium

Industry representatives participating in the WCAI’s International Symposium panel on roaming last week cited the challenges carriers will face in inking roaming agreements on 4G networks and suggested that the FCC leave data roaming up to the market instead of imposing rules, according to TR Daily coverage. Joan Marsh, vice president-federal regulatory for AT&T, and other panelists cited the difficulty of knowing exactly at this point how roaming agreements for 4G services will work in light of the absence of a standard for LTE technology, as well as uncertainty about the exact applications over networks. Speakers also noted that standards for VoIP offerings over a 4G platform haven’t been adopted. Jim Schlichting, senior deputy chief of the FCC’s Wireless Bureau, suggested that one of the factors the FCC will consider when mulling whether to change its roaming rules is the expectation of consumers when using the mobile Internet. He noted the agency also must consider whether it has the jurisdiction to regulate data roaming.

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