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Next generation mobile broadband will deliver capacity up to 200 per cent greater than that currently received when it is rolled out in 2013, it has been claimed.

According to communications watchdog Ofcom, 4G technologies will be able to send significantly more information than the current 3G technologies, by using the same amount of spectrum in a more efficient manner.

This increased capacity will help cope with the rising amount of mobile traffic sent from smartphones as well as supporting video streaming, email, messenger services, mapping services and social networking.

"The research that we commissioned indicates that early 4G mobile networks with standard configurations will be 3.3 times (230 per cent) more spectrally efficient than today’s standard 3G networks. To put this in context, a user on an early 4G network will be able to download a video in around a third of the time it takes today on a 3G network," commented Dr Stephen Unger, Ofcom's Chief Technology Officer.

And 4G mobile technologies are likely to become even more advanced. With Dr Unger predicting that they will be around 450 per cent more efficient than existing 3G ones within the decade.

However, despite the significant improvements offered by 4G, Ofcom has suggested that this increased capacity alone will not be enough to cope with the rapidly rising number of mobile broadband users in the UK, meaning that more spectrum is also needed.

The regulator's report also called for mobile networks to be designed "intelligently" to ensure that the spectrum is used in the best manner possible.

"In particular, the research anticipates a greater use of small cells to meet demand in specific areas," it concluded.

Research specialist IHS recently predicted that spending on mobile broadband is set to increase to £17.13 billion between now and 2014, highlighting its rising popularity among consumers.  

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