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Verizon plans to cover 90% of the United States with 4G by the end of 2013.  (Source: Verizon)
Verizon's 4G is almost two years ahead of AT&T's

Verizon Wireless has begun user trials of its 4G LTE network in five U.S. cities, Tech Republic reports.

The nation's largest wireless carrier has been running technical trials in Boston and Seattle. In the Boston trials, average download speeds ranged between 5-12 Mbps, and average upload speeds saw a 2-5 Mbps range. These speeds may not sound like much -- compared to even T-Mobile's HSPA+ claims -- but Verizon's stated speeds are the average reported, rather than theoretical maximums that most carriers like to tout.

Technical trials are staged [and] tiered in accordance with industry standards. They’re [now] completed," said David Clevenger, Verizon's executive director of public affairs, in a conference call with developers. “The next phase is ‘friendly user trials,’ which means we’re looking for feedback on the network."

Verizon is the first major U.S. carrier to begin building its LTE network, with plans to launch the high-speed service in 25 to 30 cities across the country by the end of 2010. AT&T, Verizon's closest competitor in terms of size, is investing in its current 3G network and won't begin technical trials of LTE until 2011. That puts Verizon's 4G ahead of AT&T's by almost two years.

Verizon also recently announced plans to build out its LTE network in rural areas, where Sprint's WiMAX coverage map is as desolate as Tatoine.

The company did not announce which additional three cities it plans to test LTE in, or who the "users" will be. The trials are a key step in rolling out the new network -- Verizon's first based on GSM technology -- to the 100 million American the company plans to cover by year's end. Verizon plans to cover its existing 3G footprint with LTE by the end of 2013.



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maybe it's just me...
By inperfectdarkness on 6/22/2010 10:32:39 AM , Rating: 2
...but those "average speeds" don't seem substantially faster than current wi-max offerings.

not to say that LTE will be better or worse than wi-max; but it doesn't have enough of a tipping point in its favor for me to entertain nutswinging on it.




RE: maybe it's just me...
By Lord 666 on 6/22/2010 10:38:44 AM , Rating: 2
LTE > WiMax based on adoption rates plus the penetration ability of the frequency is superior to WiMax.

Once LTE has more installed POPs, WiMax will fade away.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By Drag0nFire on 6/22/2010 10:52:58 AM , Rating: 2
Wonder if the battery drain will be better than WiMax too? Have to wait and see, I guess.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By deputc26 on 6/22/2010 10:56:32 PM , Rating: 2
Yep this is what i care about.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By wolrah on 6/22/2010 1:00:47 PM , Rating: 2
Just a bit of a pedantic point, the penetration issue has nothing at all to do with the technology chosen, just the frequencies where each provider is licensed. If Sprint was using LTE they'd be having the same problems for the same reason.

On that note, a point that has been raised is that supposedly the base station hardware deployed in at least the later WiMax expansions is also compatible with LTE with basically a firmware update. I don't know if this is true, but it's not unreasonable.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By mcnabney on 6/22/2010 4:07:38 PM , Rating: 2
True.

However, WIMAXX is being deployed using ghz spectrum while Verizon is rolling LTE from coast to coast (in a couple years) using that brand new 700mhz spectrum. 4x the range and massive penetration.

And it looks like WIMAXX is already done. Clearwire is going to be switching, but they claim not earlier than 2012.
http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/clearwire-hold...


RE: maybe it's just me...
By nafhan on 6/22/2010 11:01:20 AM , Rating: 2
LTE and wimax are both considered 4th gen. So similar average speeds isn't really surprising. I think it'll be about which service has the best phones and most widespread coverage and that will probably be Verizon with LTE. Verizon sounds like they are going to put the money into the network to make it happen somewhat quickly (better coverage), and LTE is positioned to be a more widespread standard (better phones).


RE: maybe it's just me...
By Lord 666 on 6/22/2010 11:14:04 AM , Rating: 2
Verizon has plans for way more than just phones with LTE. Think smart appliances, wearable medical devices, vehicles, streaming video, etc.

Let's be honest, the hand held mobile phone has already hit a saturation point. Verizon sees LTE as a way to increase wireless adoption by about 500% by putting even the ice box on the network. Part of the reason why the network is IPv6 since the beginning. Their game plan with the LTE spectrum is very long term.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By ksherman on 6/22/2010 11:29:00 AM , Rating: 2
If Verizon makes cell phones IP-based, using VoIP for voice and data for SMS/MMS all with a single data package, I will switch them them at a moment's notice.

Today's cell phone plan system is antiquated. If they did everything for $50-60 a month, their subscriber base would balloon.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By nafhan on 6/22/2010 12:10:51 PM , Rating: 2
IP based is where things are headed, but it's going to be a while. We'll, at minimum, need a nationwide 4G network. Until that happens, 4G phones will need a 3G radio for areas outside of 4G coverage.
Also, if Verizon is the first to roll out a nationwide 4G service, don't expect the prices to go down. Prices will likely go down once the second or third provider has a comparable network in place.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By theapparition on 6/22/2010 9:15:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Prices will likely go down once the second or third provider has a comparable network in place.

Yeah, that's worked real well for 3G coverage.

If you haven't figured it out, they all seem to be in collusion.


RE: maybe it's just me...
By theArchMichael on 6/22/2010 12:58:41 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
...Think smart appliances, wearable medical devices..


Yeah like pacemakers! then they can charge you an extra 0.05 cents for every heartbeat over the 100,000 that's included in the "unlimited" plan.

If this is the kind of integration that people are planning on adopting from a company like Verizon, they should just pay a one time fee...
and buy a huge dildo to f()<|< themselves.


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