US commerce chief hits China on 3G delay

18 Jan 2007

(InfoWorld Daily via NewsEdge) Secretary of the US Department of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez criticized China for delaying the creation of a 3G wireless network in that country, saying it is thwarting global technology innovation by not embracing standards.

Speaking in a session at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Gutierrez said companies around the world must support common standards to promote a worldwide environment for technology innovation, not have their own 'pockets of standards.'

He used China, where the government continues to hold out on granting licenses to build 3G networks, as an example of that misstep.

'When a government uses its heavy hand to decide what is best for its citizens, it warps the marketplace,' Gutierrez said. 'We look with great concern when any country obstructs or hinders competition.'

China has delayed plans to build a 3G network for several years, he said. Many believe it is because the government wants to promote its own homegrown 3G standard, called TD-SCDMA, instead of embracing a version of CDMA, on which other countries have built or are building 3G networks.

To do its part to encourage competition in the technology industry, the US has to revise current legislation that governs the technology industry and remain as hands-off as possible to create an atmosphere where the industry can continue to innovate and flourish, he said.

Gutierrez noted that much of the US legislation around the Internet and technology is outdated and needs to be revised to keep up with the current trends of technology convergence.

© 2007 InfoWorld Media

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