Vodafone upgrades mobile broadband to 14.4Mbps (in theory)

Making great play that consumers will now be able to access mobile broadband speeds of 14.4Mbps using its latest upgraded network, Vodafone has ‘forgotten' to declare that the true maximum throughput is only 10.8Mbps, and that subscribers can expect to see typical speeds of anything between 1Mbps and 4Mbps.

While this new, higher speed network is only available in certain UK cities, and then only in parts of London, Birmingham and Liverpool, Vodafone maintains it is pushing to install the upgrade across its UK-wide network. The company also believes that more than 80 per cent of data cards, dongles and 3G handsets should be able to take advantage of the higher download speeds.

But this continuing game of claiming data rates that are impossible to achieve (which has been ongoing since the days of GPRS) is something that Vodafone has been caught advertising in the past. The company initially advertised its mobile broadband network as "up to 7.2Mbps", but was subsequently forced to admit that actual speeds were "somewhere between 1Mbps and 5Mbps"--roughly the same as the speeds it is boasting for the new, improved network.

However, the company has defended its position by stating that network upgrades will improve performance. "Typical speeds will vary during peak periods," said a Vodafone spokesman.

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