In just a few years the Internet has transformed the way we access information, communication and entertainment services at home and at work. Broadband connections have made the Internet experience richer for millions of people and in the coming years, millions more will turn to wireless technology to deliver their broadband experience.
This paper aims to cut through the confusion and hype surrounding the relative merits of various wireless broadband technologies and get to the real issues that will influence the mass-market success of mobile broadband – and its ability to deliver broadband for all and everywhere.
While there are a host of technologies competing to deliver commercial mobile broadband services – the most recent being Mobile WiMAX – 3G networks based on well established WCDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiple Access) and HSPA (High Speed Packet Access) technologies offer the best way forward in terms of global acceptance, economies of scale and spectrum efficiency.
HSPA is the undisputed leader in mobile broadband services, as it provides:
• an ecosystem of unrivalled breadth and depth, covering both traditional mobile terminals and personal consumer devices such as notebooks, ultra mobile PCs, cameras, portable game consoles and music players
• unmatched economies of scale that benefit all players in the ecosystem, which are uniquely available to a technology that is part of the 3GPP family of standards, currently serving over two billion subscribers
• ever-improving performance, with commercially-proven transmission bit-rates of up to 14Mbps today and up to 42Mbps in the near future
• highly economic urban and rural coverage, with up to 200km cell range and measured speeds in excess of 2Mbps at the cell border
• a clearly defined and easily adopted evolution path.
Mobile WiMAX does not offer any technology advantage over HSPA.
HSPA low cost embedded modules are already available and with over 100
commercial networks in operation, HSPA is the clear and undisputed choice for mobile broadband services.