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Rise in Global Adoption of GSM-based Mobile

3G Americas announced that GSM-HSPA is expected to reach 4 billion mobile connections worldwide in September 2009. This marks a major milestone for the wireless communications industry.

"Automobiles and telephones, followed by televisions and personal computers, have undeniably changed the world and have greatly shaped the way in which we live our lives," said Chris Pearson, President of 3G Americas.

"Wireless mobile telephony substantially exceeds the impact of any one of these major innovations. In some countries, wireless penetration levels are exceeding 100 percent. Not only people, but machines, are connected through GSM technology, available today on nearly 800 networks in 219 countries worldwide."

In the Americas region the adoption of the 3GPP evolution from GSM to HSPA grew by more than 19 percent in the year ending June 2009 (2Q) to 561 million subscribers with a market share of 72 percent. Globally, GSM-HSPA grew by 20 percent adding nearly 645 million new connections in the same 12 months.

3G subscribers for UMTS-HSPA captured an annual worldwide gain of 57 percent in the year ending June 2009, according to Informa Telecoms & Media. With 377 million subscriptions worldwide at the end of second quarter 2009, UMTS-HSPA added more than 137 million new connections in 12 months.

The Latin America and Caribbean region continues to experience growth. At the end of second quarter 2009, CDMA mobile technologies saw a decline in subscriptions while GSM technologies grew at an annual rate of 22 percent to more than 433 million connections with a 90 percent share of market.

There are 49 UMTS-HSPA networks commercially deployed throughout 24 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. Worldwide, 277 commercial networks offer HSPA in 116 countries. Additionally, 11 networks have been upgraded to HSPA+.

According to Informa, by the year 2012, UMTS-HSPA will reach a milestone of one billion subscribers.

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