SOURCE: 3G Americas

May 05, 2008 19:52 ET

3G Americas Congratulates T-Mobile USA on First Major Urban UMTS/HSDPA Network Launch in 1700/2100 MHz Bands

BELLEVUE, WA--(Marketwire - May 5, 2008) - 3G Americas, a wireless industry group advocating for the GSM family of technologies in the Americas, today applauds T-Mobile USA on the launch of their UMTS/HSDPA network in the 1700/2100 MHz bands. Commercially launched today in New York City, this is the first major urban deployment of 3G UMTS in the 1700/2100 MHz bands, and T-Mobile USA plans to continue its 3G network rollout across major U.S. metropolitan markets throughout 2008. Stelera Wireless also launched UMTS/HSDPA in a regional US market in the 1700/2100 MHz spectrum bands in February 2008.

T-Mobile USA is the U.S. operation of Deutsche Telekom AG's Mobile Communications Business, and a wholly owned subsidiary of T-Mobile International, one of the world's leading mobile communications companies.

T-Mobile's announcement brings the number of UMTS operators worldwide to 216 across 91 countries, with 61 additional networks in various stages of planning, trial, or deployment. Of these 216 commercial networks, 190 are HSDPA.

Subscriptions to UMTS/HSDPA are growing at a rapid rate. According to Informa Telecoms and Media's World Cellular Information Service, there are an estimated 214 million subscriptions to date, and half a billion UMTS/HSDPA subscriptions are forecast by year end 2009. This figure is expected to grow to 1.8 billion by year end 2013, according to Informa.

Chris Pearson, President of 3G Americas, noted, "The commercial launch of UMTS by T-Mobile USA in New York City is great news for the wireless industry, wireless customers, and a significant accomplishment for the Americas region. 3G Americas congratulates T-Mobile USA on launching their UMTS/HSDPA network and on their plans to expand their 3G footprint."

There are nearly 500 devices supporting UMTS/HSDPA technology including handsets, PC cards, external modems, routers, femtocells and notebook PCs with embedded HSDPA chipsets to support a wide variety of frequency bands.

Pearson continued, "The 1700/2100 spectrum band is a common spectrum allocation for North, Central and South America. T-Mobile USA's 3G launch today will help grow the entire UMTS/HSDPA wireless ecosystem for this spectrum band at an important time, as other 1700/2100 spectrum auctions are scheduled to take place this year across the Americas."

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) endorsed the 1700/2100 MHz Advanced Wireless Service (AWS-1) spectrum band, also known at 3GPP as UMTS Band IV, and this band is marked for auction or reserved in many countries in the Western Hemisphere. In 2006, the U.S. government auctioned the 1700/2100 Advanced Wireless Service (AWS-1) spectrum band, raising a total of $13.9 billion for the U.S. Treasury with T-Mobile USA as one of the principal auction winners.

Later this year, Canada, Chile and Mexico are expected to auction the 1700/2100 spectrum bands. Additional countries in the Americas that have reserved this band for wireless services include Argentina, Colombia and Ecuador.

About 3G Americas, LLC

3G Americas is an industry trade organization composed of telecommunications service providers and manufacturers. The organization's mission is to promote and facilitate the seamless deployment throughout the Americas of the GSM family of technologies, including LTE. 3G Americas has contributed to the successful commercial rollout of GSM across the Americas and its place as the number one technology in the region, as well as the global adoption of EDGE. The organization aims to develop the expansive wireless ecosystem of networks, devices, and applications enabled by GSM and its evolution to LTE. 3G Americas is headquartered in Bellevue, WA with an office for Latin America and the Caribbean in Dallas, Texas. More information is available at www.3gamericas.org.

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