Included display provides usage statistics, remaining allowance
AT&T has added to its range of 4G LTE connectivity devices with a built-in display. The AT&T Beam from Sierra Wireless is a USB modem that connects to the carrier's 4G LTE network, and like the MiFi Liberate, it comes with its own LCD panel to provide important details, such as the strength of the signal and how much data is remaining in the monthly allowance.
Knowledge of TD-LTE spectrum to help Sprint in rollout
SoftBank's CEO is continuing to talk-up his company's $20.1 billion offer to buy out Sprint, by claiming SoftBank's experience with 4G will help the US carrier. Network enhancements, such as SoftBank's single frequency network technology for reducing interference, will help Sprint in the long run alongside other benefits, according to CEO Masayoshi Son.
Android smartphone to catch up with other flagship devices
Google is working to manufacture a 32GB version of the Nexus 4 with LTE support, according to a rumor. The smartphone built with LG, will reportedly receive a boost in storage from the 8GB and 16GB models already available, along with the speedy 4G LTE connectivity seen in other flagship smartphones.
Leaked markets get LTE coverage later than expected
Sprint has expanded its 4G LTE network to cover another 21 markets, the same locations detailed in a leak last week. The carrier is also adding another 34 markets to its existing 170-market LTE-rollout roadmap, which means that its 88 currently-active LTE markets will be joined by another 204 areas by the end of this year.
Optimus smartphones to extend LTE-capable catalog of carriers
A pair of LG Optimus smartphones with LTE connectivity appear to be heading to US carriers in the coming months. The Optimus G Pro is rumored to land on AT&T at some point in May, while the Optimus F7 will apparently become Boost Mobile's third LTE-capable device, and has already appeared in an image in its carrier-branded form.
Areas of Los Angeles, Memphis to get coverage
Sprint is rolling out its 4G LTE network in a number of new markets later today, according to a leak. The network, which is said to offer speeds between 6 to 8Mbps and a peak of 25Mbps, may end up being turned on with little to no fanfare in a similar way to how areas of New York City, Washington D.C., and San Francisco quietly went live in February.
New AT&T 4G LTE markets include Napa, Santa Rosa-Petaluma
Shortly after stating it will build a Gigabit fiber network to compete against Google in Austin, AT&T has expanded its 4G LTE network into six new markets. While this means the carrier is currently covering 182 different markets, AT&T also plans to add another 77 markets to the list by this summer, as the carrier tries to catch up to Verizon Wireless and its 4G LTE network.
Carrier to test 4G connections over multiple bands
British carrier EE is planning to double its spectrum allocation and increase its 4G speed in the country, before other phone networks are able to launch their own 4G LTE offerings. It plans to roll out its expanded spectrum service to 10 cities by June, and to trial carrier aggregation in an effort to provide even more bandwidth to its service.
Update enables Visual Voicemail, LTE network connectivity
Reportedly, T-Mobile is planning on sending carrier updates to unlocked iPhones used on its network on or around April 5. The update should enable LTE and Visual Voicemail to the devices brought to the carrier. The update will be pushed only to iPhones running iOS 6.1 or greater.
Move part of further LTE initiatives by carrier, including protocol improvements
On Monday at the VentureBeat Mobile Summit in California, AT&T Senior Vice President Kris Rinne reported that the carrier would activate HD Voice on its network later in 2013, calling it "part of our voice over LTE strategy." Also in the interview, the executive described previous call quality concerns as "off the table," and mostly resolved.
Requires different radio, so previous units can't update to it
[Update: AWS iPhone 5 has cleared FCC approval] In light of the rollout of Apple's iPhone on T-Mobile, Apple has announced that it will begin selling a very-slightly modified version of the iPhone 5 starting April 12. The "new" version, which will carry the same model number, is different only in that it adds capability for T-Mobile's LTE network frequencies, known as AWS (Advanced Wireless Services). No other new features have been added, but because the AWS addition requires a hardware change in the cellular radio, current iPhone 5 units cannot be upgraded through software to AWS compatibility.
Majority of markets to offer 150Mbps maximum speed
Rogers is expanding the reach of its LTE coverage in Canada to include an extra 44 markets over the next few months, increasing the proportion of the Canadian population covered by LTE to beyond the 60-percent hit last year. The expansion will also see 34 of the 44 new markets become capable of maximum theoretical network speeds of 150Mbps, using the carrier's 2600MHz spectrum band.
New plans explained, more LTE devices added to roster
T-Mobile has formally announced that it will carry the iPhone 5, as well as the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4, at its "Uncarrier" media event. At the same time, the carrier has turned on its LTE 4G network in a number of markets, announced other devices that the phone network will offer in the future, and reiterated its new Simple Choice plans.
UnCarrier plans start from $50, unlimited 4G data from $70
T-Mobile has made its new "UnCarrier" contract-free prices official in the United States. The new plans, doing away with the two-year contracts and generally streamlining prices for all future customers, has been unveiled just days before the carrier was due to host a special event, where it is still expected to turn on its 4G LTE network.
Crowdsourced network service detects LTE signals
A number of cities may have been identified as launch locations for T-Mobile's 4G LTE roll-out. Details picked up by crowdsourced network coverage map service OpenSignal suggests that it could launch in nine different cities in the United States, when the carrier is expected to launch the network upgrade later this month.
Software update pushed to Galaxy Note II enables LTE
T-Mobile will be activating its 4G LTE network in the United States by the end of this month, according to reports. An over-the-air update is being sent to Samsung Galaxy Note II smartphones to activate the LTE radio in preparation for the LTE turn-on, which is expected to be at the same time as the BlackBerry Z10 becomes available through the carrier.
Users can collect unused data for later; 30 percent already on board
FreedomPop, a cellular internet service provider and maker of an iPod Touch case that can turn it into a full working smartphone, has just implemented a new "data rollover" feature for its plans, which let users keep unused data from month to month. The service, which offers 500MB of monthly WiMAX and LTE cellular data for free following the purchase of one of its custom sleeves for iPhones or iPod touch models, allows users to share data with friends and earn additional free data through referrals. It provides either mobile or home internet service.
Support for LTE Category 4, thin profile
Huawei took advantage of Mobile World Congress to demonstrate what it calls the "world's fastest 4G LTE smartphone." The Ascend P2, officially unveiled yesterday by the company, is the first with LTE Category 4 support for theoretical maximum download speeds of up to 150Mbps. Electronista took a few moments to get an overall feel for the high-speed mobile phone on the Barcelona show floor.
Huawei's latest Android handset
Following accurate leaks, Huawei has formally unveiled its Ascend P2 smartphone. Labeled the "world's fastest 4G LTE smartphone," the Android-based P2 is said to be one of the first smartphones to arrive on the market with LTE Category 4 support for theoretical maximum download speeds of up to 150Mbps.
Could eliminate need to make separate versions of phone models
The long-awaited possibility of a single, unified chipset that would allow a phone to be truly "global" for LTE users and let manufacturers release a single, worldwide version of various phone models may be at hand. Apple's primary LTE and 3G radio chipset provider, Qualcomm, debuted its RF360 Front End Solution line of chips which support all current LTE and 2G/3G bands. In addition to providing universal LTE/3G capability, the new line also improves overall RF performance.
System based on R4 Cortex-A9 CPU
Nvidia has formally introduced its Project Grey chip, which is officially known as the Tegra 4i. Marketed as a superior alternative to Qualcomm's Snapdragon offerings, which have proved extremely popular in the smartphone market, the new chip brings a much smaller footprint than the current Tegra 4 SoC while adding an integrated LTE modem.
Carrier hopes to cover 87-percent of customer base with LTE
US Cellular has revealed the next markets that will receive its 4G LTE service. The introduction of 4G LTE service and the expansion of existing high-speed connections will see the carrier expand it's 4G LTE coverage of its customers from the current 61-percent to around 87-percent by the end of this year.
Small-sized offering aimed at smartphones, tablets
Broadcom on Tuesday announced that it has commenced testing of a new LTE chip with its largest customers. The chip is the first of its kind from the manufacturer, and is aimed at competing products from LTE leader and pioneer Qualcomm. Broadcom said today that it expects devices with its LTE chip to go into production in 2014.
Hotspot has touch-screen display, ten-device limit
AT&T will be offering a second mobile hotspot with touchscreen capabilities to customers later this week. The AT&T Unite by Sierra Wireless will allow users the ability to create a ten-device Wi-Fi hotspot that uses the carrier's 4G LTE phone network, with the further option of allowing the creation of a guest network for one-time users.
Existing 3G-service customers to access 4G LTE when rolled out
British carrier Three is planning to offer 4G service without requiring any changes to existing contracts, including those with an unlimited data allowance. Customers will be able to access the 4G signal on current 3G contracts without needing to pay a premium or lose any of their existing data allowance, so long as they are using smartphones capable of connecting to it, and are in an area covered by the signal.
UK carriers may be allowed to roll out 4G LTE outside of auction
United Kingdom telecommunications regulator Ofcom is considering the prospect of allowing carriers to reuse existing spectrum for LTE-based services, such as those offered by EE. Such a proposal from Ofcom would potentially offer more spectrum for the faster network services than its current 4G spectrum auction could provide, with little in the way of extra licensing cost for phone networks.
Arrives ahead of major shopping holiday, Chinese New Year
Although the Wi-Fi version of the fourth-generation iPad line has been available in China since early December, this Friday will see the retail debut of the LTE-capable version of the iPad and iPad mini, just three weeks ahead of Chinese New Year. The iPad mini, already a hit in the country, is prominently featured on the Apple Gift Guide for the celebration, a major shopping holiday for the region. China granted the license to sell the LTE versions last month.
All plan tiers include unlimited calls, texts
MetroPCS has announced a set of wireless contracts for 4G LTE with a focus on simplicity, including one with unlimited data. The new mobile phone plans all include unlimited voice minutes and texts, and offer three different tiers of service, with the only differentiation being the amount of 4G data usage is permitted each month on the subscription.
Upgrade to AT&T network follows similar by Verizon, T-Mobile
AT&T has rolled out its 4G LTE network in 15 new markets in the United States, and expanded network coverage in a number of already-live locations. Ten have gone live today, while five others were launched earlier this week -- pushing the total overall number of markets AT&T's 4G LTE network is operational in to 124.
Apple iPhone 5 makes strong debut at expense of the competition
The latest report by Strategy Analytics gives Apple a 27 percent share of the global LTE smartphone market. In total, the global subscriptions to LTE plans is currently estimated at around 50 million, representing a large increase in LTE sales compared to 2011, when only 9 million users had an LTE connection. Apple’s traction in the LTE space has come at the expense of Samsung, which although retaining the top spot, dropped from a 51 percent share three months ago to 40 percent for Q3.
Rollout of 4G LTE-Advanced promises 100Mbps connection speeds
AT&T may start rolling out its LTE-Advanced network in the second half of 2013 if a rumor is to be believed. If correct, it would see AT&T effectively catching up to Verizon's LTE lead with the next generation of 4G access, with potential average download speeds of 100Mbps being quoted for the technology.
Android-based camera to use 4G network in future
A version of the Samsung Galaxy Camera with 4G LTE connectivity will be heading to Verizon, if a recent FCC filing is to be believed. Using LTE access in Verizon's section of the 700Mhz band, the camera appeared under the model number EK-GC120, a slight change from the EK-GC100 name the HSPA+ model used when it was certified.
Nexus 4 shown to work on Band 4 (AWS) LTE
A senior member on the XDA Developers forums has demonstrated that the Google Nexus 4 made by LG can offer at least limited support for LTE networks. Analysis of the hardware in the Nexus 4 reveals that it contains a baseband chip that can support some LTE networks. However, Google opted not to pursue full LTE capability in order to deliver a one-model handset that would work on any network around the globe, leaving it saddled with 3G HSPA by default.
Briefcase-sized transmitter could block thousands of devices
An LTE network in a city could be taken down by $650 worth of equipment, according to researchers. The team at Virginia Tech believes that a battery-operated transmitter the size of a small briefcase could, if operated correctly, knock out 4G coverage for miles around a large base station, cutting off communications for thousands of users.
Says it violates same LTE patents as previous iPhones, iPads
Still reeling from its major court defeat against Apple in the US and a string of legal losses in other countries (punctuated by the occasional -- but minor -- victory), Samsung has now added the iPhone 5 to its new lawsuit against Apple, this time claiming that all LTE-equipped mobile devices Apple makes are in violation of eight patents the Korean "fast follower" device maker holds. The lawsuit is widely seen as weak, since at least some of Samsung's LTE patents would likely be declared "standards-essential" and subject to FRAND regulations.
MetroPCS has passed the 1 million 4G LTE subscriber barrier, according to its third quarter results. The milestone represents approximately 12-percent of the company's total subscriber base of 9 million, itself lower than the previous quarter by over 312,000 customers, down 2-percent from the same quarter last year.
Digital Mobile Spectrum Limited to move Freeview channels
The UK may have a quicker overall rollout of faster mobile network services than previously thought. Mobile carriers Everything Everywhere, O2, Vodafone, and Three have stopped their legal threats, and have joined together to create a company specifically to aid in deploying LTE services in the 800MHz band by clearing it of TV signals.
Study compares US and European LTE rates
American wireless customers are paying significantly more for LTE service than are their counterparts in Europe. This according to a new study from the research arm of the GSM Association, which represents mobile operators. The study looked at LTE service rates in the United States and in several European countries, finding that data policies among the major American carriers, in combination with a lack of competition, are driving up the cost of service far beyond what European customers pay.
End-to-end QoS said to deliver clear calls
In a media conference call today, Verizon's Nicola Palmer confirmed that the carrier is indeed working on Voice-over-LTE capability, and the company plans to roll out the feature late next year. Verizon is reportedly continuing to test the service, which has been in the works for some time now. Estimates made earlier in this year pegged Verizon's VoLTE service as arriving in early 2013, though Palmer's latest statements disprove those predictions.
LTE from carrier now covers 60 percent of population
Rogers has expanded its LTE coverage in Canada by 18 new markets. Previously promised in July, the expansion sees the carrier's LTE network grow enough to cover 60-percent of the Canadian population, only months into its second year of deployment in the country. This forms part of the company's $500 million plan for widespread LTE coverage by the end of the year.
Verizon leads in latest expansion
Verizon and AT&T have announced their latest LTE rollout locations, bringing 4G service to a long list of new cities ahead of the iPhone 5 launch. Verizon leads the current push, deploying LTE for the first time in 19 cities and expanding the existing footprint in an additional 21 locations. AT&T, in contrast, plans to activate LTE service this week in just nine cities.
AT&T expands to Philadelphia, Wilmington, Verizon to Jefferson City
Both Verizon and AT&T announced today expansions in their LTE coverage. For AT&T, the new LTE coverage areas are a continuation of a round of LTE expansions that kicked off in April of this year. Verizon's expansion is in furtherance of that carrier's goal of providing LTE coverage for 400 cities by the end of the year.
Carrier continues to try for 120 city LTE target
Sprint has expanded its 4G LTE service into four more markets and boosted its 3G efforts in three. Users in Baltimore, Md., Gainesville, Ga,. Manhattan/Junction City, Kan., and Sedalia, Mo. will be able to take advantage of the high-speed service from this week onwards, as Sprint moves towards its goal of putting LTE into 120 cities by the end of the year.
Carrier hopes to cover 20 million Canadians by end of year
Wireless network carrier Fido is turning on 4G LTE for some of its Canadian customers. Users of the carrier are able to use LTE devices at speeds theoretically up to 150Mbps in Calgary, Montreal, Ottowa, St. John's, Toronto, and Vancouver from today onwards, with no added costs for people using their own LTE-capable smartphones.
Aims to cover 60 percent of Canada population with LTE by 2013
Rogers is celebrating the first anniversary of its LTE deployment in Canada by expanding its coverage. After spending $2.2 billion in 2011 and 2012 on the network in general, the carrier will be putting close to $500 million towards its goal of covering the majority of the Canadian population with LTE access by the end of this year.
Deal awaits regulatory approval
Despite the vocal dispute between Verizon and T-Mobile regarding spectrum ownership, both companies have established a swap and sale agreement for Advanced Wireless Services-band (AWS) licenses in several hundred US markets. The companies suggest the spectrum transfer will help bolster their respective LTE expansion plans.
4G auction delays due to threats of litigation
The blame for the slow creation of a 4G network in the UK lies with carriers, according to a government minister. Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, told the Future of Entertainment summit in London that repeated legal threats to Ofcom from mobile service providers are causing delays, as opposed to government interference. Vaizey referred to the continued problems Ofcom faces from carriers, saying “Every single one is threatening to sue, not Ofcom, if they get it wrong, which is continuing to prolong the roll out of 4G in Britain.”
Patents expected to be used for mobile technology
Intel has agreed to buy 1,700 mobile patents from InterDigital. The $375 million cash deal sees patents for Wi-Fi, 3G, and LTE technologies head to the processor giant, which is expected to expand its push into the mobile market. The patent sale comes six months after InterDigital decided against selling itself entirely, preferring to continue its patent licensing business.
Modernizing 2500 cell sites by end of July
T-Mobile has detailed its network improvement plans, including LTE rollout for 2013. The carrier is preparing to modernize 37,000 cell sites, including several thousand to be revamped this summer. Additional HSPA+ expansion will occur ahead of LTE trials this summer, before the company formally deploys LTE service next year.
Case stems from difference in US, foreign LTE bandwidths
The Australian newspaper, in a very brief item, notes that Apple has agreed to pay a fine to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) of over $2.25 million (about $2.22 million US) and admit that its advertising of the latest iPad as having LTE compatibility in Australia was deceptive. While the new iPad is compatible with North American LTE networks, most other countries that have LTE use a different frequency that is not compatible.