A call for 3G standard decision

Includes: CHA, CHL, CHU, CN-OLD
by: Ezra Marbach

Fixed-line telephone operator China Telecom (ticker: CHA) is asking the government to quickly decide on the future of the Chinese developed TD-SCDMA standard for third generation (3G) mobile communications. Why is this significant?

The company's outspoken concern over the immaturity of the TD-SCDMA
standard is the loudest thus far by a domestic telephone operator.

China is expected to issue 3G licenses sometime this year, with the government choosing between three standards - the European-backed WCDMA, Qualcomm (ticker: QCOM) developed CDMA 2000, and China's home grown TD-SCDMA.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) submitted a proposal to the State Council last November suggesting that China Telecom and China Netcom (ticker: CN) adopt TD-SCDMA as the major standard for 3G networks.