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3GPP WCDMA Finalisation Standards Baseline Announced
Posted: 06-Apr-2001 [Source:]

[The final version of WCDMA, the first end-to-end 3G standard, agreed upon by the 3GPP.]

by Jean Panke -- The 3rd Generation Partnership Project which has been meeting regulalry for the past two years, has announced the release of the first WCDMA standard, the accepted European 3G network standard. The 3GPP's recent gathering in Palm Springs, California established the future compatibility between versions of the standard bringing them to a level required for commercial operation of WCDMA networks.

The first functioning version of the Release 1999 WCDMA standard in December 2000 will be used for testing network and terminal equipment over the course of the current year. Since this release is not future or backwards compatible it will only be used to develop equipment internally.

The Release 1999 March 2001 version will be the first future-compatible standard providing full WCDMA functionality. All commercial network equipment from October 2001 on will be based on the Release 1999 March 2001 version. This updated version allows for full interworking with existing GSM networks creating a foundation for dual mode GSM/WCDMA terminals.

The 3GPP meets quarterly allowing for regular adjusting of the standards. Operators will be able to upgrade more easily as standards issued post the initial December version are upgradeable via software rather than hardware.

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