Global Mobile Networks (GMK’s)

03Oct07

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Cellular phones have revolutionized the way we communicate. The ability to be reached anywhere was a tool that the entire world seems to have an everlasting hunger for. But when traveling, or moving for that matter, the convenience of a cell phone gets a lot more complicated. Network incompatibility, changing phone numbers and expensive roaming fees plague the mobile communications field and make calling from a cell phone abroad a complicated and expensive matter. Cubic Telecom hopes to change that with its introduction of its global mobile network.

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Cubic Telecom used existing infrastructure to support its global network. Using “dual-mode” handsets—phones that can switch between GSM and WiFi connections—Cubic Telecom uses a combination of both networks depending on what is less expensive in the area you happen to be in. When you are in a WiFi zone, you have access to free or penny-per-minute local and international calling, depending on the hotspot. All international rates are a fraction of the roaming cost of any major cellular company. Cubic Telecom also offers a SIM card-only option, which can be used in any unlocked phone, but loses the ability to make WiFi calls.

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Another added bonus: when traveling abroad, a customer then has the option to order up to 50 free international phone numbers, all of which can function simultaneously. For example, if John Smith travels to Paris to see his relatives, he would request a Paris phone number. If any of his Parisian relatives want to call him, they would use his Paris phone number and it would be a local call. However, if his family in Canada wants to call him, they can use his Canadian phone number and it would be a local call for them as well. As for John, the Cubic Telecom customer, he can speak to his relatives all he wants, from 214 countries, and be guaranteed rates 50%-90% than what the “big carriers” are charging.

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Global mobile networks offer huge benefits for any company that engages in any form of international business. Not only does it simplify overseas calling by never making the caller switch networks or phone numbers, it allows you to do it at a fraction of the cost.

It is also very friendly to customers and clients, as it allows the organization to establish “local” phone numbers in any country it does business with, without having to set up expensive land line and call forwarding systems. This allows all international clients to contact the organization at their local calling rate.

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While Cubic Telecom’s service may eventually revolutionize international telephony, it still has a number of faults that must be solved before mass adoption will occur.

Firstly, since the service is brand new, its supporting services are not yet as developed as its competitors. “Several pieces of its system have yet to be slipped into place,” says New York Times’ technology critic David Pogue, “including tech support, customer service, documentation, Internet data plans and domestic calling rates.” These services, especially those related to customer support, are often as important to organizations as the phone service itself and may deter many companies from adopting until they are offered. (“But what the heck,” ads Pogue, “here’s a $140 phone, or a $40 SIM card, that can save you thousands of dollars a year.”)

Another imperfection is the price of domestic calling. As mentioned above, domestic calling is one aspect of the service that is yet to be finalized, with current estimates at a pricey 18 cents per minute. If this becomes the final price of domestic calling, Cube Telecom will lose the ability to be used as an organization’s full time phone and instead be used for international calls and travel use only.

Lastly, since there are a lot of complex connections behind every phone call on the global mobile network, calls are not instantaneous like on standard phones. Connection times can take up to 25 seconds longer per call, translating into a substantial inefficiency for any organization that performs a high volume of daily calls.

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Cubic Telecom’s global mobile network is a revolutionary technology, allowing both individuals and businesses to make international and overseas phone calls at a fraction of the price of the larger carriers. However, since GMNs are such a new technology, many challenges still need to be overcome. Therefore, while the Cubic Telecom GMN is not a panacea of international communication, it is unquestionably a catalyst to the next generation of low-cost international calling.

REFERENCES:

Farber, Dan. ” Cubic Telecom launches global phone.” ZDNet Tech 17
Sep. 2007. 30 Sep. 2007
Available at: <http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/?p=6279>.

“Cubic Telecom.” CruchBase 20 Sep. 2007. 30 Sep. 2007
Available at:<http://www.crunchbase.com/company/cubictelecom>.

Miller, Matthew. ” Cubic Telecom announces a truly world phone.”
Howstuffworks 19 Sep. 2007. 30 Sep. 2007
Available at: <http://blogs.zdnet.com/mobile-gadgeteer/?p=595>.

Pogue, David. “A Cellphone Without Borders.” The New York Times 27
Sep. 2007. 30 Sep. 2007
Available at: <http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/27/technology/circuits/27pogue.html?pagewanted=1&_r=2>.

Cubic Telecom. Cubic Telecom. 30 Sep. 2007
Available at: <http://www.cubictelecom.com/>.

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