UMTS Milestones

1991 (October)

ETSI TC GSM put in charge of UMTS specification activities in addition to the GSM work and renamed " TC SMG" (=Special Mobile Group).

1996 (March)

UMTS Task Force Report on a UMTS strategy for Europe completed

1996 (Spring)

Creation of the UMTS Forum as a world-wide body, dealing with market, regulation and spectrum aspects of UMTS.

1997 (February)

Consensus on UMTS strategy achieved by ETSI TC SMG

1998 (I Quarter)

Agreement on the basic concepts of the UMTS standard including services, radio and network aspects in ETSI TC SMG

1998 (December)

Creation of the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), transfer of the UMTS standardisation work to 3GPP

2000 (March)

GSM/UMTS release 99 (LCS, UMTS fundamentals, UTRAN) completed by 3GPP, ETSI TC SMG and ANSI T1P1

2000 (June)

Transfer of the remaining GSM specification work to 3GPP, closing of ETSI TC SMG, creation of a new Technical Committee MSG (=Mobile Standards Group) responsible for European regulatory standards.


GSM/UMTS Release 4 frozen by 3GPP (mainly enhancements of Release 99)


GSM/UMTS Release 5 frozen (IMS, HSPDA, WAMR, evolution)


GSM/UMTS Release 6 frozen (evolution)


GSM/UMTS Release 7 frozen (evolution)


GSM/UMTS Release 8 frozen (SAE, LTE, evolution)


GSM/UMTS Release 9 frozen (evolution)

2009 end

409 million UMTS users (WCDMA and HSPA)


First LTE trials

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