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Vodafone Slips on Talk of Reduced 3G Data Speeds

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Vodafone (VOD) - Get Vodafone Group Plc Report was down 5.4% in preopen Instinet trading after the No. 1 mobile phone operator was said to be reducing the data speeds for the 2002 launch of its mobile Internet service.

According to sources quoted by


, the company is cutting the speeds for third-generation, or 3G, networks to 64 kilobytes per second, from 144 to 384 kilobytes, in order to simplify its network construction and save money.

The move means the networks will be less suitable for high-bandwidth transmissions, like video.



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reported Vodafone was asking handset manufacturers to build equipment compatible with both U.S. and European 3G standards. Vodafone holds a 45% stake in U.S. telephone and wireless company


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and plans to offer a single worldwide service to customers of both.

One analyst quoted by


said such dual compatibility would not be available until 2004.