While other European mobile operators have successfully tested the capabilities of HSPA+ for providing high-speed fixed/mobile broadband services, Germany's E-Plus has gone one better by starting a trial using HSDPA technology to provide broadband services in rural areas.
According to E-Plus, the 50 businesses and residential customers involved with the trial will be able to access the Internet with speeds up to 7.2/1.4 Mbps using the company's HSDPA network--along with devices and SIM cards provided by E-Plus--for free. The users are all within the coverage of a single mast that has been specifically installed for the trial.
The company, which signed an agreement with Ericsson and the local Ministry for Economics, Labour and Tourism of the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern at the end of last year, has now gone live with the trial which is scheduled to run until the end of 2009. E-Plus said the HSDPA trial would use ‘digital dividend' frequencies to better understand if it could provide a solution to the provision of rural broadband.
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