Was browsing Yeasu's website this evening and discovered something interesting listed in their HT and Mobile radio sections. A listing with no picture labeled "Digital". Clicking on it gives a little blurb about downloading information about digital communications in the amateur radio world. It is a 6mb PDF file that contains a brochure talking about digital radio. Vertex Standard produces a line of HT and Mobile radios that do APCO-25, and another mode with uses TDMA. Time Division Multiple Access. On page 14 of this PDF, they say they are going to bring out an HT and a Mobile radio in early 2012 that does C4FM modulated digital voice in either FDMA (Frequency Division Multiple Access) or TDMA for the Amateur Radio market. C4FM is opposed to GMSK like what D-Star uses. I'm sure they'll probably wind up using the same or similar audio codec as D-Star though, AMBE. I would love to hear otherwise, especially if they decided to use the unfinished Codec2 somehow. I doubt it though.
TDMA would be interesting to see. You can have repeaters that allow two conversations at the same time, as if it was two repeaters, with just one set of hardware.
It's going to be an interesting year next year. "Amateur Radio should be progressive." is what the brochure says, I agree.
Let me know if this link doesn't work, it's a direct link to the PDF file.