Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) has launched the Gramjyoti Rural Broadband Project, an initiative to introduce benefits of WCDMA/HSPA technology in rural India and connect communities to high-speed internet services for the first time.

The trial project was launched in early September and will showcase the benefits of mobile broadband applications across 18 villages and 15 towns close to Chennai, in the state of Tamil Nadu.

By creating a stable ecosystem based on leading WCDMA/HSPA technology, Ericsson will provide these communities with high-speed internet so they can access a range of new services including: telemedicine; e-education; e-governance; online local information; voice and video call services; and live TV and entertainment.

The initiative seeks to demonstrate how WCDMA/HSPA technology can be a major catalyst for social and economic empowerment in this developing region, helping to bridge the digital divide and increase productivity and quality of life.

Communities and schools will be among the beneficiaries of the initiative. More than 3,000 high school students within these communities will now have high-speed internet and can take e-learning courses, gaining access to new information and educational resources for the first time. These communities will also benefit from health services such as live interactive check-ups via telemedicine.

Mats Granryd, Managing Director of Ericsson India, says: "Ericsson aims to help India's rural population get first-hand experience of broadband applications. This pioneering project will provide communities with access to meaningful broadband services for the first time. Building an efficient and affordable WCDMA/HSPA rural broadband can help serve as a blueprint for the widespread introduction of internet and broadband connectivity in the future."

The location for the project was chosen for the Rural Broadband Project because it reflects the typical telecom profile of rural India, where many families have limited or no access to fixed telephones, but do have access to a mobile phone.

The Gramjyoti Project is supported by partners including Apollo Hospitals, Hand In Hand, Edurite, One97, CNN and Cartoon Network.

"We are delighted that India's Department of Telecommunications has given its support for this initiative, and we look forward to close collaboration with our partners to help bring communications to all," Granryd says.

Read more about the Gramjyoti Rural Broadband Project at http://www.gramjyoti.in/index_eng.htm

Ericsson is shaping the future of Mobile and Broadband Internet communications through its continuous technology leadership. Providing innovative solutions in more than 140 countries, Ericsson is helping to create the most powerful communication companies in the world.

Read more at
www.ericsson.com

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT
 
Ericsson Media Relations
Phone: +46 8 719 69 92


About Ericsson's HSPA solution
Ericsson's HSPA solution is a part of Ericsson's Full Service Broadband offering and enables already today download speeds of up to 14.4Mbps and upload speeds of 1.4Mbps. The advanced technology lets operators more than double their system capacity and cuts response times for interactive services. On average, users will be able to download 20 times faster than with a GSM/GPRS connection. Future evolution steps will increase the HSPA download speed to 42Mbps and the upload speed to 12Mbps. Ericsson offers HSPA support on many frequency bands ranging from 850MHz to 2.6GHz.