Mobile providers look towards 3G technologies, and the services it allows them to offer and charge for, as the savior of their businesses. Before the salvation can arrive, though, people need to widely adopt 3G phones. The problem there is that the technology is expensive, and confusing to many. The GSM Association, a group of mobile phone operators, has recognized this. The obvious solution is to make cheaper handsets which can still make effective use of the 3G technology available.
The body has established a core set of common features for low cost phones. The common features will establish economies of scale which will lead to cheaper phones for consumers, and more customers for the companies. Once the core features are accepted by the GSMA members, handset makers will be able to bid on the construction of the phones. The winning handset will be endorsed by the GSMA and adopted by the carriers.