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UMTS Forum Members on Schedule for the First Phase of HSPA

Key players in the development of High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) restated their commitment to delivering live commercial HSPA systems in 2006 during an open workshop organised by The UMTS Forum and hosted by Orange in Paris today. Infrastructure vendors, terminal vendors, operators and regulators all confirmed their commitment to enable commercial launch of services based on High Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) during 2006. Initial services will be launched using HSDPA while services based on improvements in uplink capabilities using High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA) are expected to be launched during 2007. Both technologies offer key benefits to existing 3G/UMTS operators as they can be easily implemented as upgrades to and in co-existence with deployed UMTS/WCDMA networks.

Keynote speaker Mr Emmanuel Caquot, Director of Information Society & Technologies at the French Ministry of the Economy, Finance & Industry urged all industry players to focus on strategies which will deliver long term benefits rather than developing quick and incomplete solutions which address only short term issues.

Mr Caquot also encouraged participants to continue their focus on inter-operability to ensure the competitiveness and attractiveness of the UMTS industry going forward.

Speaking at the workshop The UMTS Forum Chairman Jean Pierre Bienaim referred to the importance of HSPA in the context of the rollout of 3G service globally: "The deployment of HSPA is a critical step in stimulating the 3G services market and it is very encouraging to hear how advanced the market is in terms of the trialing and validation of the technology. The early terminals will provide significant improvements up to 3.6 Mbit/s, and as the market evolves we will see even higher data rates. At the UMTS Forum we will continue to promote the leadership of 3G/UMTS based on these HSPA improvements".

The UMTS Forum is also pushing for the adoption of the term "HSPA" for use within the industry. "We are starting to see a proliferation of different brands for enhancing UMTS", said Jean Pierre Bienaim. "The UMTS Forum believes that this creates a risk of confusing the market so we are advocating an industry focus on HSPA as the primary term for use by all major industry players".

The workshop was attended by UMTS Forum members from the operator, vendor, and regulatory communities as well as a wide list of invited industry guests. It focussed on the technical and commercial benefits of HSPA technology as well as discussing the roadmap for delivering live commercial service and possible future evolutions to UMTS technology. A separate session focussed on mobile TV services and technologies as well as the use of the Digital Dividend for 3G/UMTS coverage extension.

HSDPA will offer significant benefits to both end user and operator, such as download speeds that will be ten times higher than UMTS/WCDMA deployments today (from 3.6 Mbit/s up to a peak throughput of 14.4 Mbit/s). HSDPA also offers a reduced system delay that will enable interactive services such as online gaming as well as the evolution to the multimedia services enabled by the IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS). In addition the data capacity of networks will be increased by up to a factor of five offering a much reduced network cost for data services. HSUPA will offer an improvement of throughput on the uplink, offering a throughput of 1.5 Mbit/s in early deployments, enabling highly interactive peer to peer services.

UMTS Forum Workshop 6th July 2005 Presentations - Members only