First German CDMA mobile data network goes live

The first CDMA network in Germany went live earlier this week with the aim of providing mobile data services in and around the city of Cologne. The network has been built and commissioned for NetCologne, a regional telecoms and cable operator, by the Chinese infrastructure vendor Huawei.

NetCologne said that the new network would provide 2Mbps high-speed data services to an area of approximately 160 sq km, with a potential subscriber base of about one million. The company noted that the service would target the many students attending Cologne University looking for a high-speed, low-cost mobile data service.

Confirming that it had won the contract late last year, Walter Haas, CTO at Huawei Germany, added that the company was very confident it could meet NetCologne's requirements of reducing ongoing and overall costs by ensuring the CDMA base stations were upgradable to LTE when necessary.

While neither company provided many details, this move will be viewed as peculiar given the almost total lack of CDMA networks and devices in Europe. While NetCologne plans to offer CDMA dongles to users, the reasons for not adopting a W-CDMA 3G-based solution might have been due to Huawei's extensive experience with CDMA in Asia, and its ability to offer an ‘attractive' price.

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