By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Washington— The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) established joint Web sites focused on the safety of cellular phones' RF emissions. The sites' URL addresses are www.fcc.gov/cellphones and www.fda.gov/cellphones. The sites explain that the FCC limits the amount of RF energy that phones can produce and that the levels permitted "are far below the levels determined by scientific experts to have the potential for an adverse effect on humans," the FCC said. The site also points out that "while no scientific evidence has been published demonstrating harm from short-term exposures to low levels of RF energy, studies are now underway to look at the possible risks of long-term exposures." The results of such studies will be posted on the sites, the FCC said.
Wheaton, Md.— The worldwide wireless-handset replacement rate peaked at 36-37 percent in 1999 and 2000, collapsed to 19.7 percent in 2001, but will swing up in coming years, according to Hershel Shosteck Associates. The future replacement rate, however, won't match the 1999-2000 peak, and combined with declining net-new subscriber growth, handset unit sales will rise only modestly from 2000's 390 million. In 2005, total handset sales will hit 455 million in 2005, with only a "minor increase" through 2007, the company said.
Redmond, Wash. — AT&T Wireless began offering the industry's first GSM/TDMA phone, the Siemens S46 at $199. The quad-band (800/900/1800/1900MHz) world phone, which incorporates GPRS, is available in the carrier's GSM markets. It's bundled with two voice plans: a one-rate plan starting at $59.99 for 450 minutes, including all roaming and domestic long distance; another plan starting at $34.99 for 300 minutes includes long distance if the call is made on an AT&T GSM or TDMA network. Data is extra.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.