Ericsson, 3 Italia in world-first commercial step towards HSPA Evolution

Press release
Jul 16, 2008 09:00 (GMT +00:00)
Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) and 3 Italia have achieved an industry first: the successful establishment of enhanced HSPA mobile-data connections in a commercial network. The enhanced HSPA technology enables maximum uplink data rates of 5.8Mbps and a significant reduction in network latency, resulting in markedly better performance for interactive consumer applications.

This milestone, achieved in 3 Italia's existing commercial network, marks another step towards HSPA Evolution and reconfirms HSPA as the leading mobile broadband technology. The higher uplink data speeds and lowered latency in the mobile network make more efficient interactive communication possible for the consumer. The faster uplink will provide an improved consumer experience in areas such as video conferencing, uploading user-generated content and sending e-mails with attachments, and better performance for interactive online gaming.

Vincenzo Novari, CEO of 3 Italia, says: "This world-first achievement reaffirms our commitment to accelerating the development of the mobile broadband market."

Cesare Avenia, President of Ericsson Italy says: "This achievement is a strong proof of the excellent service capabilities of Ericsson, which has the responsibility for the overall management of 3 Italia's network."

Ulf Ewaldsson, Vice President and Head of Product Area Radio, Ericsson, says: "With this world-first achievement we underline Ericsson's technology leadership in the mobile broadband area. We thank 3 Italia for the close co-operation to reach this milestone."

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Ericsson is the world's leading provider of technology and services to telecom operators. The market leader in 2G and 3G mobile technologies, Ericsson supplies communications services and manages networks that serve more than 195 million subscribers. The company's portfolio comprises mobile and fixed network infrastructure, and broadband and multimedia solutions for operators, enterprises and developers. The Sony Ericsson joint venture provides consumers with feature-rich personal mobile devices.
Ericsson is advancing its vision of 'communication for all' through innovation, technology, and sustainable business solutions. Working in 175 countries, more than 70,000 employees generated revenue of USD 27.9 billion (SEK 188 billion) in 2007. Founded in 1876 and headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Ericsson is listed on OMX Nordic Exchange Stockholm and NASDAQ.
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3 Italia - The Hutchison Whampoa Group's Mobile Media Company, won a UMTS license in Italy in 2000, commenced offering its services in 2003 and is now the leader of the UMTS market in Italy - with over 8.2 million customers - thanks to a wide offer of multimedia, video communication and internet services, in addition to entertainment, music, information, cinema, sport and Mobile TV. After acquiring the national license as digital TV operator in 2005, the following June 3 Italia launched the first Digital Mobile TV based on DVB-H technology in the world, broadcasting on a mobile exclusive basis in Italy all the matches from the FIFA World Cup 2006. 3 Italia has also established itself on the cutting-edge of third generation mobile technology (3G) development by launching the first HSDPA commercial offer in Italy and implementing HSUPA to access broadband in mobility with data transmission speeds of up to 7.2 Mbps in download and 1.4 Mbps in upload. In June 2007, 3 Italia launched X-Series, the first all-inclusive  offer that extends several of the core applications and features of the broadband Internet to third generation mobile  handsets. In October 2007, 3 Italia and Skype launched 3 Skyephone, the first mobile phone offered to the mass market and specifically studied for free Internet calls, that lets people using Skype through an embedded software. Finally, in June 2008, DVB-H free channels and free Internet thus become the cornerstone for 3 Italia's "cross-medial" strategy, conceived to offer TV and the Internet in mobility, in a single pocket and personal object, combining non specialized TV, thematic channels, TV 2.0, social networking and the whole rich internet world.
About the HSPA improvement
The improvement is provided by several enhancements standardized by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), bringing the maximum possible uplink speed for HSPA to 5.8Mbps, much higher than the current maximum of 2Mbps. The latency, or delay, in the HSPA network is also significantly reduced. The latency of a network is characterized by the time it takes for a data packet to travel from the consumer device through the network to, for instance, an application server on the internet and back again. This is also known as "round-trip time" or "ping time." Consumer applications with high levels of interactivity (resulting in many packages being sent forwards and backwards over the network) perform much better with lower latency. It can provide an improved consumer experience in areas such as faster downloading of content-rich internet pages and better performance for interactive online gaming.

About Ericsson's HSPA solution
HSPA has the inherent advantage of being a natural extension of existing WCDMA/GSM technology, which powers about 85 percent of the world's existing wireless networks. HSPA reaches a large number of wireless users and has created a mass market for mobile broadband. By 2010, 71 percent of mobile broadband connections are projected to be based on HSPA. Ericsson's HSPA mobile broadband solution, part of Ericsson's Full Service Broadband offering, today enables download speeds of up to 14.4Mbps and upload speeds of 5.8Mbps. 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.