Orange France has launched a network trial based on HSDPA technology from Canadian network equipment provider Nortel.
In a statement, the company said the trial would provide mobile broadband connectivity at 1.8Mbps, or four times faster than current networks, for 150 lead business customers in Lyon, France's second largest city.
Orange France expects to commercially launch its HSDPA enterprise network nationwide in the second half.
In addition to its presence in Orange France's GSM and EDGE networks, Nortel is also the exclusive provider of Orange France's UMTS network in the central regions of France, which include Cannes, Nice, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Toulon, Grenoble and St. Etienne.
Earlier reports said Nortel, Orange and Qualcomm had successfully completed in January UMTS and HSDPA calls in the 900MHz band, a solution that could complement Orange's existing 3G services to deliver wireless broadband to rural areas of France.