Light Reading

3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK

Michelle Donegan
LR Mobile News Analysis
Michelle Donegan
8/21/2007
50%
50%

U.K. operator 3 will shake up the mobile broadband market next month when it launches cut-rate high-speed downlink packet access (HSDPA) services. The move could spark the first mobile broadband price war in the U.K. (See 3 UK Prices X-Series and 3 Plots Mobile Broadband.)

Unstrung can reveal that the operator will offer HSDPA services with speeds up to 2.8 Mbit/s for £10 (US$20) per month for 1 Gbyte of data, which will considerably undercut the offers from the second quarter, Orange UK , T-Mobile (UK) , and Vodafone UK .

Other tariffs will be a 3-Gbyte service for £15 ($30) per month and a 7-Gbyte service for £25 ($50) per month.

3 has not yet unveiled the pricing of the USB modem. One report says it will be free for existing 3 customers but will costs £79 ($156) on a 12-month contract or £29 ($57) on an 18-month contract.

According to an Unstrung Insider report, which was published in December last year, the average price for a 1-Gbyte service was $60 per month, including the modem. The lowest price in Europe was around $40 per month including the modem, says Brown.

T-Mobile's cheapest 3G laptop data service in the U.K. is $57 per month, which includes the modem, for unlimited data. Vodafone offers a 3G data service for $59 per month for 3 Gbytes; the USB modem is free on an 18-month contract and costs $118 on a 12-month contract. (See Carrier Scorecard: T-Mobile International, Vodafone Prices Data Roaming, Orange Touts 3G Data, and O2 Reports Q2.)

"Mobile operators have historically priced mobile bandwidth as a scare resource that has to be protected with high tariffs," says Gabriel Brown, Unstrung Insider chief analyst and author of the report Mobile Broadband Pricing Strategies & HSDPA. "But HSDPA changes the economics of mobile broadband by allowing more users to share each 5 MHz radio channel."

3 will also allow customers to use their HSDPA handsets as modems to connect to their laptops.

But it is not clear whether 3 will require customers to sign up for a voice tariff package in addition to the broadband service. The operator will announce full pricing details when it launches the service on September 3.

"Many people say that 3G technology doesn't allow mass market pricing for mobile broadband," says Brown. "3's new tariffs show that with HSDPA, mass market pricing is possible, although it's not yet clear if attractive data pricing will be tied to costly voice subscriptions."

At service launch, 3 will have deployed its HSDPA network to cover about 50 percent of the U.K. population, and by the end of the year, 85 percent of the population will be covered.

— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Unstrung

(8)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
IPobserver
50%
50%
IPobserver,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:42 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
I'm reminded of this poll we ran in January 2007, asking how much you'd pay for mobile broadband.

http://www.unstrung.com/survey...

Out of 152 responses, 30% would pay up to $40 a month, and 58% less than $30.

But I wonder, even if these prices were available, would you really sign-up?

After all, it's yet another monthly bill to add to all those other monthly bills we have.
IPobserver
50%
50%
IPobserver,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:42 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
-ú10 (~$20) a month for a 3G data service would be great value.

It'll be interesting to see if it's linked to a voice plan, or if 3 will sell to anyone with a modem.
lrmobile_amby
50%
50%
lrmobile_amby,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:41 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
This has been available in Ireland (and other Three countries) for a while. The prices might give an indication of what the UK prices might be for same.

http://www.three.ie/broadband/...


IPobserver
50%
50%
IPobserver,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:36 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
There are some more user comments over on GigaOm

http://gigaom.com/2007/08/22/3...

IPobserver
50%
50%
IPobserver,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:36 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
Thanks Amby,

From looking at the website it seems you also have to buy their modem.

Do you know of it's been popular in Ireland?

Details of the UK offer have popped up here for pre-orders:
http://threestore.three.co.uk/...


Apparently 3 has done similar in Sweden with some success.

borracho
50%
50%
borracho,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:29 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
A relevant question to ask is how do you intend to use the service, regardless of the cost? I guess if you use MBA for work then $40/m paid/reimbursed by your employer is manageable while a $20/m for personal usage might still be quite high.

Any stats on user profiles (business vs. personal) and applications used on MBA?

Borracho
IPobserver
50%
50%
IPobserver,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:27 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
Interesting questions. We don't really have the stats youGÇÖre asking about.

The poll has 152 responses GÇô it's anonymous and without methodical rigor GÇô but stillGǪ

In answer to the question, If you have a 3G laptop service, who pays for it?

* 34% said their employer has a corporate deal;
* 24% claim it back through expenses;
* 40% pay their own way; and
* 3% other

The big hope from the mobile industry has been that employers would start making 3G modems standard issue, as with BlackBerry. This is one reason operators have held off cutting prices (to see what the enterprise would swallow)GǪ but 3 doesnGÇÖt have much corporate business, so there's no lost opportunity from lower prices.

I only know one person who uses HSDPA as their primary connection. Because he canGÇÖt get any other service (apart from satellite), it's made a real difference and he can overlook the slow uplink and poor latency.

Likewise, if you're already connected at home and at work, and use 3G when youGÇÖre out or traveling, I think you can live with the shortcomings. It's generally better than having to find and pay for WiFi, etc.

At home it's only good enough as a replacement for DSL or cable for "broadband lite" users.

For what it's worth, I find HSPA an amazing technology. With enhancements to uplink speed, QOS, and battery consumption still to come, it'll have along life.

We'll soon start seeing much more action on embedded laptop modules and Email-style devices.
borracho
50%
50%
borracho,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:03:26 PM
re: 3 Heats Up HSDPA in UK
Thanks for the info. It is interesting to see users are split almost 50-50 between corporate and private. It would be really interesting to see the 40% who pay for their own service what they use it for (access to work related apps, private email, etc.).

If you think HSPA would be around for long time combined with future enhancements roadmap, wouldn't it hurt/delay the adoption of 4G (I am thinking WiMAX)? Will it be a horse race between these two (3G/HSPA and 4G)? Well, 3G is out of the gate while 4G hasn't saddled-up yet.

Borracho
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Anshul Sadana answers questions from Steve Saunders, Light Reading's founder and CEO, about Arista's CloudVision, a global cloud network controller for workload orchestration and workflow automation delivering a turnkey solution for cloud networking.
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
LRTV Custom TV
End-User or Enterprise Benefits to the New IP

7|30|15   |   04:27   |   (0) comments


Andrew Coward discusses what the New IP means to end users or enterprise customers. He explains compelling reasons, including how every customer can get their own network, from the transformation to the New IP.
LRTV Custom TV
Network Visibility & the New IP

7|30|15   |   02:23   |   (0) comments


Mukund Srigopal provides an explanation of what network visibility is and how it is essential as service providers transition to the New IP. In addition, the importance of the network packet broker is discussed.
Between the CEOs
Video Exclusive With Basil Alwan, Alcatel-Lucent

7|24|15   |   26:44   |   (5) comments


Basil Alwan, President of IP Routing & Transport at Alcatel-Lucent, discusses virtualization, cultural challenges, the capex crunch and more with Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders.
LRTV Custom TV
VDF: Enable the Financial With Mobile Money

7|20|15   |   06:53   |   (0) comments


Ian Ravenscroft discusses how operators can expand to occupy the entire digital services value chain through service innovation.
LRTV Custom TV
Telefónica on OSS Transformation

7|20|15   |   06:01   |   (0) comments


Jose Gonzales discusses the details of Telefónica's operation transformation program.
LRTV Custom TV
Judi Achmadi on Huawei's Cloud Storage Solution

7|20|15   |   03:33   |   (0) comments


Judi discusses the key business goals of TelekomSigma's public cloud service and how Huawei's solution helps them address challenges.
LRTV Custom TV
KPN Enlightening Digital Business & IT Transformation

7|20|15   |   06:19   |   (0) comments


Rob de Beer discusses the changes that operators need to make with service innovation now coming from the Internet world.
LRTV Custom TV
Stratus Telco-Grade Cloud Solutions & NFV

7|20|15   |   07:34   |   (0) comments


Ali Kafel from Stratus Technologies addresses high-availability concerns within the telco industry with a solution that enables telcos to provide high-availability and stateful fault-tolerance using a software-based approach.
LRTV Documentaries
The Six Million Dollar Business Man

7|20|15   |   01:52   |   (0) comments


Steve Saunders, publisher. A man barely alive after an acquisition malfunction imploded the company he founded. Gentlemen, we can rebuild Light Reading. Better, faster, stronger.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Anukool Lakhina, Guavus

7|20|15   |   38:51   |   (1) comment


Guavus CEO Anukool Lakhina talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the role of operational analytics in the communications services and networking sectors, particularly in relation to IoT.
LRTV Custom TV
IBM's Flash Storage With Intel QuickAssist

7|20|15   |   03:18   |   (0) comments


Intel's Bev Crair and IBM's Eric Herzog discuss how IBM's V9000 Flash Storage System has helped customers around the world. Featuring real-time compression powered by Intel QuickAssist Technology, the V9000 is a next-gen flash storage solution.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Thailand's AIS: Transforming to an FMC Operator

7|17|15   |   4:53   |   (0) comments


Saran Phaloprakarn, Senior VP of Fixed Broadband Business Management of Thailand's AIS, was a keynote speaker at the first Asia-Pacific Ultra Broadband Summit in Bangkok. In this video, he talks to Heavy Reading about transforming into an FMC (FBB+MBB+Content) operator.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Network operators start seeing savings from NFV in the first year, according to a study by Affirmed Networks and ACG.
Hot Topics
Robbins Succeeds Chambers as Cisco Changes CEOs
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 7/27/2015
RJio to Launch Its Own 4G Devices Brand
Gagandeep Kaur, Contributing Editor, 7/27/2015
Easing the Tech Pains for the Homeless
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/28/2015
Qualcomm Wants FCC to Stay Out of LTE-U Fray
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 7/27/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Basil Alwan, President of IP Routing & Transport at Alcatel-Lucent, discusses virtualization, cultural challenges, the capex crunch and more with Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders.
Guavus CEO Anukool Lakhina talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the role of operational analytics in the communications services and networking sectors, particularly in relation to IoT.
Cats with Phones
Comes With Free Phone Stand Click Here
Who says cats don't have any skills?