CNET News is reporting the impending launch of a "service this month that will allow people talking on their cell phones to seamlessly switch between T-mobile’s cellular network and their home Wi-Fi networks." T-mobile’s "converged service" is based on a standard called Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) and will be available for a flat fee.
Initially, the Wi-Fi/cellular service will be limited to indoor, home-based Wi-Fi networks that use standard 802.11 Wi-Fi routers. Outside that Wi-Fi hotspot, the dual-mode phone (most likely to be the Samsung SGH-T709) will automatically switch over to T-Mobile’s cellular network. In the future, the service could be "expanded to T-Mobile’s 7,836 hot spots located in airports, cafes and other public areas throughout the country," eventually migrating to "ubiquitous access."
T-mobile’s service, which will allow users to conserve voice minutes access to a higher speed network, will be the first of its kind in the U.S., a guinea pig for Sprint-Nextel and Cingular, who are in the process of developing similar services.
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