Just as operators are beginning to roll out LTE, standards group 3GPP is working on extending the life of 3G.
The chief mobile standards body has accepted a technology pitched by Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) and T-Mobile USA that promises to increase peak HSPA data rates to 672 Mbps.
NSN states the new technology, dubbed Long Term HSPA Evolution (LT HSPA Evolution) would “improve mobile broadband with speeds matching those promised by LTE Advanced.”
The pair aim to make the technology ready for deployment by 2013, and have already gained approval for key features including HSDPA evolution, multipoint transmission and dual-antenna beam forming from a 3GPP RAN plenary meeting.
Keith Sutton, NSN’s head of W-CDMA, said the vendor was “equally committed” to LTE and HSPA.
“The demand for higher data rates and mobile broadband growth continues to push the need for advances in both HSPA and LTE technologies,” he said.