The ITU also initiated approval of a new data compression standard that will speed up downloads over the Internet and interactions with Web pages.
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The introduction of V.92 will bring the actual speed of modems closer to the 56kbps theoretical limit.
With current V.90 modems, the actual transfer rate rarely exceeds 33.6kbps on the best connections, but the new standard is designed to raise this to 48kbps.
The new data compression recommendation,V.44, is a replacement for the current V.42bis and will increase the compression ratio to 6:1 from the current 4:1. The combination of V.44 with V.92 is expected to almost halve current download times.
Although analogue connections are seeing a rising challenge from digital services, market analyst IDC predicts that there will be 100 million analogue modem users by 2002.