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Wi-Fi Phones Near 100; Few in United States

The Wi-Fi Alliance today said it has certified almost 100 voice-over-Wi-Fi capable handsets since it began testing them in 2004, with service provider support for combined cellular/VoIP phones now under way in seven countries.

I'm surprised that there are 82 certified dual-mode devices on the market. Not many have reached the United States, and certainly not in the enterprise-class market. Even devices that have launched in Europe (like the Nokia E61) have had Wi-Fi taken out of them when they reach the United States (it became Cingular's Nokia E62). I'm not sure if it's that the carriers don't want to see Wi-Fi in phones (preferring that customers use wide area wireless solutions instead) or if that dual-mode devices are unable to get through QA measures set by carriers. In either case, the two leading carriers, Cingular and Verizon, have only a few Wi-Fi enabled smartphones each.
Sean Ginevan
NWC Contributing Editor

It was fitting that the announcement came at the 3GSM World show in Barcelona, Spain: Most of the phones and services target overseas markets, not the United States, Network Computing tech editors noted.

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