The two major US carriers that have made plans to roll out LTE in the next few years are slowly but surely starting to bring forth more details on deployment, and it appears that MWC was determined to be a good time to make some announcements.
Verizon gave out the most detailed plans. The company plans on a full deployment of LTE by 2010, utilizing the newly acquired 700 mHz spectrum. Trials are already under way, with 3 markets set to start real-life tests sometime in the second half of this year.
No pricing plans were set, and no specifics were mentioned of actual data download speeds; rather, Verizon CTO Richard Lynch would only say that the real speeds would not be known until the real-world tests are made. Peak trial speeds have been set at 60 Mbps so far.
AT&T, on the other hand, was a lot more vague in details. All it will say at present time is that trials will be underway sometime in 2011. If that’s the case we should expect limited deployment by 2012 — maybe nationwide, but we’re not counting on it until we have further details on the matter.
My personal opinion is that AT&T is in no hurry to deploy LTE since it is very careful on how it deploys HSPA, which is slow to evolve enough as it is. The recession may also possibly have a lot to do with the delays.
I also believe AT&T will observe Verizon’s rollout of LTE and learn from any mistakes made from it, so as to avoid making the same mistakes on its own rollout. What do you think? Am I spot on, or does my theory lack something?
Verizon via NetworkWorld
AT&T via Gizmodo
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