3G is not yet established as a mature technology, that 4G is already (almost) there. Proof, if necessary, is the DoCoMo trial and demo of a 5Mbit/s link, or Ericsson demonstrating 3G+ LTE at 144Mbit/s. Does it make sense to be in a such hurry when services and content do not follow technology? Consumers witness stammering developments for years, first in technology then in standardization, then in deployments. Costs cannot be cut fast enough to address the mass market, because volume is not there (analyze the 3G example) and consumers become circonspect with new technologies.
Is the hurry only driven by huge IP rights vendors and operators have to pay on current technologies? On WCDMA, four companies are sharing 60% of 3G intellectual properties and 12 companies own 80%. Some 3G products are “taxed “ with royalties of up 29%. Will it really change over years? Qualcomm, Samsung are holding essential IP on WiMAX, and Qualcomm owns essential IP in all 4G technologies through its acquisitions of Flarion and Airgo. In the mean time, it is a hot topic in 3GSM Congress.