4G coming 'in three years'

Far East to see 32 high def channels - all on one three-inch screen...
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

Far East to see 32 high def channels - all on one three-inch screen...

While European operators are pressing ahead with rollouts of HSDPA networks - a type of 3.5G - their counterparts in the land of the rising sun are already working on the subsequent generation. NTT DoCoMo, Japan's largest mobile operator, will have a 4G network up and running by the end of the decade, according to the local press.

A report in Japanese business daily Nikkei says the operator will have the 4G network - capable of a theoretical speed of 100Mbps on the move and 1Gbps stationary - by 2010.

The newspaper also reports that the company may spend up to ¥200bn (£863m) on the network, which could potentially exceed the speeds of most wired networks available at the time.

DoCoMo has previously committed to developing a 4G network but has given no indication of when it hopes to have it in use. It is thought to be trialling 4G technology this year.

Korea's Samsung also announced the development of 4G technologies, with a deployment also planned for the end of the decade.

Samsung claims the network can support downloads of 32 high definition TV channels simultaneously. DoCoMo recently bought a small stake in two Japanese TV companies and is likely to tie in broadcast television more closely with 3G and 4G networks.

NTT DoCoMo could not immediately be reached for comment.

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