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By 2012, 50 per cent of Europeans accessing the internet will do so via mobile broadband, it has been claimed.

According to a study recently published by Arthur D Little and Exane, lower prices for mobile broadband services will dramatically increase the number of people opting to use the technology, TotalTele reports.

"Lower [data] prices, the rollout of HSDPA networks, and also the uptake of HSDPA devices means that mobile broadband traffic growth is set to explode," Antoine Pradayrol, head of telecoms at Exane BNP Paribas, told the resource.

However, as more people begin using such services, internet service providers will increasingly need to develop new technologies to help handle the increasing demands of users.

Mr Pradayrol added that to deal with increased traffic, mobile broadband providers will need to employ femtocells to boost mobile signal strength and ensure network coverage.

Suggesting possible solutions for mass deployments of such technology, Mr Pradayrol advised ISPs that are trialing femtocells - such as Vodafone, O2 and Orange - to supply them to customers who need them most on a case-by-case basis.

Mobile operators, telecoms hardware and software vendors, content providers and innovative start-ups have created the Femto Forum in order to support the development of femtocells.

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