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UMTS Forum Predicts 1 Billion HSPA Users by 2012

In a new report published this week, mobile industry body The UMTS Forum www.umts-forum.org forecasts that there will be almost one billion active users of High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) networks by 2012.

The new study also anticipates that HSPA will significantly stimulate data ARPUs, generating E56bn in annual revenues for mobile operators by 2012.

In addition, the report forecasts that total 3G mobile data revenues will increase from E17bn in 2006 to over E120bn annually in 2012.

Titled "Report 39: The global market for High Speed Packet Access (HSPA): quantitative and qualitative analysis", the study has been prepared on behalf of The UMTS Forum by Analysys Research www.analysys.com. It is available free of charge to all UMTS Forum members.

By affording additional capacity and bandwidth in mobile operators' existing spectrum allocations, HSPA can significantly reduce delivery costs per bit and improve operators' ability to deliver advanced applications including:

- Mobile TV and video services
- Music Downloads
- Advanced Business Applications.

The report quantifies how the improvements offered by HSPA technology will stimulate the market for 3G data services. It also segments the likely applications which will drive this revenue on a regional basis, highlighting geographical differences between take-up of services such as mobile infotainment.

"There's no doubt that HSPA, initiated by its downlink component HSDPA, is the key enabler for realising the full vision of mobile broadband and the personal Internet", says UMTS Forum Chairman Jean-Pierre Bienaim.

"By 2012, 3G HSPA subscribers will be generating average traffic per user seven to nine times that of non-HSPA 3G subscribers as a result of higher quality user experience and lower tariffs", continues Bienaim. "Thanks to relatively low deployment costs, HSPA will represent a 'must-have' for the vast majority of 3G/UMTS operators over the next few years."