Vodafone launches 42Mbps mobile broadband to Irish market

20 Sep 2011

Mobile broadband in Ireland has been pushed to a new limit – a whopping 45Mbps – according to Vodafone. The company today revealed it will be the first carrier to introduce HSPA+ Dual Carrier technology.

HSPA+ Dual Carrier technology is the latest milestone in 3G technology on the road to 4G Long Term Evolution.

The technology effectively runs two mobile broadband links on the one modem, allowing broadband users to enjoy double the speed.

“Mobile broadband technology has gone from 3.6Mbps to 14Mbps and 21Mbps,” Vodafone’s chief technology officer Fergal Kelly explained. “What we’re doing with HSPA+ dual carrier is changing the modulation complexity so in effect we’re sending more information in the same link but doubling the capacity from 21Mbps to 42Mbps.”

The new HSPA+ Dual Carrier service will cost €34.99 per month, including VAT.

Kelly explained that, in practice, the peak customer experience will be limited to 32.4Mbps of the design threshold after overheads and signalling are removed. In real conditions, users could expect peak speeds of 27Mbps and an average of 10Mbps in good conditions.

Another technology the company is introducing is a Quality of Service feature that prioritises certain users’ broadband access, guaranteeing them four times faster access than a standard connection.

Kelly explained that the increase in mobile broadband speeds is being led by the growth in flexible working practices in Ireland, especially where firms are trying to make greater use of business applications hosted in the cloud.

The HSPA+ Dual Carrier technology has already been enabled on Vodafone’s network in Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Waterford and Kilkenny, and major towns like Bray, Carlow, Drogheda, Dundalk, Ennis, Greystones, Naas, Navan and Swords. The remaining national rollout will be completed over the next 12-18 months.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years