China and Japan announce 4G alliance

Both countries are expected to sign an agreement to cooperate in the research and development, and setting of standards.

China and Japan have decided to get together to develop the next generation of mobile telephony: 4G.

An agreement to that effect will be signed on August 26 in Tokyo between state representatives, a spokesman for the Japanese ministry for interior affairs and communication told AFP.

"During the meeting, we expect to sign an agreement regarding co-operation in research and development, with a view to creating a standard to be used worldwide," he said.

The spectrum of R&D in this case could be almost anything, given that the technical specifics of 4G have yet to be firmed up, a spokesman for Samsung--one of the key members of the 4G Forum, a vendor coalition conducting 4G R&D--said recently. "Currently, the debate is around the uses for 4G... We will then base the technical specifications around those uses," he said.

Japan was the first country to launch third generation mobile services. China, on the other hand, represents the largest mobile market in the world, with close to 335 million users at the end of 2004.