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Voda outlines timetable for HSDPA trial

Testing, testing...

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Vodafone UK is to trial its souped-up 3G service next month ahead of a commercial launch of the service later this year.

The HSDPA (High Speed Downlink Packet Access) service has already been tested in Newbury, but now the mobile giant plans to enlist the help of 100 firms in central London to put the service through its paces.

If successful, Vodafone plans to begin rolling out the HSDPA service from the summer with punters within the M25 first to get their hands on the mobile broadband service. Other major UK towns and cities should be wired up by the end of the year.

HSDPA boosts the speed of existing 3G services to roughly four times faster than current 3G speeds, enabling users to access the web more effectively and download stuff such as PowerPoint presentations and email attachments more quickly.

Vodafone UK chief exec Tim Miles said the trials were important to help improve the service. "We have seen high demand for 3G since its launch two years ago and our customers are hungry for the improvements that HSDPA will deliver," he said. ®

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