Cingular to deliver 3G services based on UMTS and HSDPA
Posted on 1-Dec-2004 20:11
Filed under: News
Cingular Wireless have announced plans to begin deploying a fast high-speed mobile wireless data network. The company expects to offer wireless data speeds between 400-700 Kbps (kilobits per second) and bursts to several megabits per second on capable devices.
Cingular will be building 3G UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) with HSDPA (High Speed Downlink Packet Access) networks in a number of major American urban and suburban markets beginning in 2005.
Cingular's recent acquisition of AT&T Wireless provided the company with the spectrum necessary to build the 3G networks. The company intends to make the high-speed network available to not only its regional and rural roaming partners but also enable regional and rural carriers to deploy UMTS services on their networks as well.
Cingular signed agreements with Ericsson , Lucent Technologies and Siemens to develop and deliver the infrastructure required for a broad-scale deployment of an expanded 3G UMTS/HSDPA network. Additionally, several manufacturers have committed to supplying handsets and other devices for use on the UMTS network. Cingular said it expects to offer 3G services in most major markets by the end of 2006.
The UMTS/HSDPA service will enable enhanced services, including broadband-capable high-speed Internet access, wirelessly enabled enterprise productivity tools and audio/video streaming for business customers, along with a host of consumer services such as high-resolution digital image and video capture and playback and advanced multi-player gaming.
UMTS/HSDPA offers customers the ability to have simultaneous voice and data sessions, so a customer can use a handset to make a call at the same time they're checking e-mail or browsing the Internet at high speeds.
Cingular also signed an agreement with Nokia to enhance its existing GSM/GPRS/EDGE network and possibly support the deployment of its 3G UMTS network.
Currently, Cingular customers can use EDGE, a 2.5G network technology, to receive average data connection speeds up to 135 Kbps depending on the device used. EDGE is available in more than 8,500 cities and towns, and in areas along 30,000 miles of interstate highways. In the near future, UMTS devices will be backward compatible with EDGE.
Earlier this year, AT&T Wireless launched the country's first commercial UMTS wireless networks in Dallas, Detroit, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle. Cingular will continue to offer UMTS services in those six markets.