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Cingular Claims 3 Mbps Cellular Data Speeds In Test

Cingular Wireless said Tuesday that it and Lucent Technologies have successfully completed a call using advanced 3G cellular voice and data technology.

The call used High-Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) technology that, proponents claim, will offer theoretical data speeds as high as 14.4 Mbps. HSDPA is an extension of UMTS 3G technology, which Cingular has said it plans to role out in the next two years.

Cingular and Lucent said in a statement that they achieved sustained data rates of more than 3 Mbps during the tests. Cingular said the technology will eventually allow it to offer services such as streaming video.

Cingular said late last year that it intends to roll out a nationwide 3G UMTS network starting in 2005 and that it will upgrade to HSDPA not long after the UMTS roll-out is complete, probably in 2006. UMTS offers typical speeds in the 200 Kbps to 400 Kbps range, slightly slower than data speeds on CDMA 3G speeds such as Verizon's 1xEV-DO network.

Cingular and Lucent performed the tests in Atlanta, where they have been setting up a test HSDPA network in the last several months.