Vodafone will launch its next evolution of mobile broadband next week when the carrier flicks the switch on Australia's first commercial High Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) service in Sydney and Melbourne.
HSPDA, which will be officially launched on October 20, 2006, will provide customers with data download speeds of up to 1.8MBps, which is around four times faster than its current 3G service
The new service increases upload speeds from 128kbps on 3G to a peak speed of 384kbps on HSDPA.
To access the new mobile broadband service, customers will need to purchase a Vodafone Mobile Connect (VMC) with HSDPA/3G data card (PCMCIA format), which went on sale this week.
Mobile broadband connectivity is also available as a built-in option on Lenovo ThinkPad R60, T60, X60 and Z61 notebooks.
Vodafone will release its HSDPA/3G USB modem next month, and expects HSDPA mobile handsets to be available for retail sale in the first half of 2007.
For mobile workers the HSDPA/3G data card can be used with the Linksys Wireless-G Router (WRT54G3G).
Vodafone Australia's general manager for business markets, Edward Goff, said the company will announce roll-out plans for other Australian cities next week.