EDGE kicked to the kerb by Europe

3G whirlwind sucks us in...

3G whirlwind sucks us in...

EDGE technology - the poor mans 3G - has died a death in Europe even though it's cheap and almost as function rich as 3G. Despite its ability to almost mirror the functionality of UMTS for a snip of the price, Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE) will not take-off in Europe as developers and operators have been sucked into the 3G hype, according to Virtyt Koshi, senior consultant at Ovum. Koshi claimed developers and operators are buying into a 3G "revolution" and ignoring the financial sense that EDGE makes as an economical stepping-stone toward UMTS. "The margins are higher in 3G. EDGE only involves a 5 per cent cost increase to upgrade a network from either GSM, which it is based on, or GPRS. UMTS involves an entirely new network, hence that's where the money is," said Koshi. The only way EDGE can exist in Europe is if 3G fails to take off, Koshi said. "There are high risks associated with 3G and there is no guarantee it will be a success. Incase it fails, EDGE could be the interim solution for UMTS developers. It will definitely be a focus for those operators that have not been able to purchase a 3G license" Koshi added.