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Samsung Reveals first 3.5G Phone

4th January 2006

 Samsung HSDPA Phone Samsung, working in conjunction with Qualcomm have given a glimpse of what's likely to be the first HSDPA (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access) phone, designed for use on Vodafone's forthcoming 3.5G network in Europe.

From the limited amount of information available, the first handset appears to be cosmetically similar to early Samsung 3G phones (such as the Z105). The main feature here though is the handset's potential 1.5Mb/sec download speed, which is several times better than a standard UMTS 3G phone (at around 0.3Mb/sec). Ultimately, HSDPA should be capable of working at up to 7Mb/sec initially, and then 14Mb/sec and beyond when new equipment becomes available.

HSDPA works on top of W-CDMA cellular networks (as does the standard 3G UMTS). As with the original rollout of 3G devices, you can expect the initial coverage for HSDPA to be somewhat limited and initially of use to business customers who want to make high-speed connections to corporate data networks while on the move. These networks are being rolled out in Europe, North America and Japan during 2006.

One final point - although 3.5G sounds impressive, you should bear in mind that T-Mobile is currently rolling out a 4G data network in Prague, Czech Republic.

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