Internet Goes WAP in Singapore

Singapore is gearing up to introduce a flurry of mobile Internet services and applications based on WAP (wireless application protocol). The first WAP-enabled mobile phone handsets are set to become commercially available here early next month.

WAP allows information from the Internet be to be accessed from a mobile phone and other wireless devices.

Trials have been successfully completed Singapore's two existing mobile phone operators SingTel Mobile Pte. Ltd. and MobileOne Asia Pte. Ltd. (M1). Content providers signed up by M1 include Yahoo Inc. and the British Broadcasting Corp.

M1 expects to soon launch a 14.4K bits per second commercial service, offering news, stock and currency information, airline flight details and entertainment information, the company said in a statement earlier this week. Services to be introduced later include electronic shopping, banking, share trading and games, M1 said.

SingTel Mobile has already begun giving 400 corporate customers a preview of its forthcoming service, by providing them with Motorola Inc.'s L series or L.M. Ericsson Telephone Co.'s R320 WAP-enabled handsets.

Towards the end of the year, M1 will increase WAP data transfer speed by a factor of 10, once its already installed GPRS (general packet radio service) system -- the first in Southeast Asia -- goes into commercial service. M1's GPRS system, supplied by Finland's Nokia Corp., can support data speeds of more than 100K bps.

Last week, Motorola completed tests here of a complete mobile Internet platform using GPRS with WAP mobile applications over GSM (global system for mobile communications) networks.

The demonstration combined Motorola's GPRS handsets loaded with WAP-based applications, a complete Internet protocol-based GPRS network infrastructure solution using routing technology from Cisco Systems Inc. and a billing and maintenance solution.

SingTel can be contacted at +65-838-3682 or on the World Wide Web at M1 can be found on the World Wide Web at

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