Long Term Evolution (LTE) is considered a 4G network technology. According to the GSMA, the trade group that promotes the GSM family of technologies, LTE is the next step from 3G/WCDMA & HSPA for many already on the GSM technology curve. Interestingly, though, a number of carriers across the world on the CDMA technology path have opted to switch to LTE for their 4G network upgrades. According to the GSMA, LTE is designed to be backwards-compatible with GSM and HSPA, and incorporates Multiple In Multiple Out (MIMO) technology in combination with Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access (OFDMA) in the downlink and Single Carrier FDMA in the uplink to provide high levels of spectral efficiency. LTE can support channel bandwidths from 1.4 MHz to 20 MHz and both FDD and TDD operation. Commercial LTE service was first launched in December 2009 in Scandinavia by TeliaSonera. In 2010, carriers in the U.S. and Japan both released commercial LTE services. In the United States, MetroPCS offers LTE service in the AWS spectrum band, while Verizon Wireless offers LTE service in the 700 MHz spectrum band. Verizon said its LTE network, which it brands as a 4G service, provides average download speeds of 5-12 Mbps. AT&T Mobility is planning to launch LTE service in the United States in 2011, and Clearwire is testing LTE service in the TDD and FDD configurations. Sprint Nextel also is keeping open the possibility of launching LTE service. LTE-Advanced is the next step up in the evolution of LTE. According to the GSMA, LTE-Advanced “extends the technological principles behind LTE into a further step change in data rates. Incorporating higher order MIMO (4x4 and beyond) and allowing multiple carriers to be bonded together into a single stream, target peak data rates of 1 Gbps have been set.”

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T-Mobile: All Band 12 LTE devices on our network must support VoLTE, E911

T-Mobile US is not forcing smartphone makers to drop support for its 700 MHz A Block spectrum using LTE Band 12, as some reports have indicated, but it does require that OEMs that want to include Band 12 support also support Voice over LTE and E911 capabilities.

Madden: How Wi-Fi will save LTE... And how LTE will save Wi-Fi

LTE operators have a major problem. ARPU is dropping, but data consumption continues to grow. The big LTE operators are forced to give bigger data bundles for lower prices. This will not end well. Wi-Fi operators also have a major problem. They're spending more money on equipment than they collect in Wi-Fi service revenues. Frankly, that's unsustainable without some way to create revenue from the Wi-Fi network. The basic problem: Nobody pays for Wi-Fi anymore.

Ericsson: LTE leads way as mobile broadband subscriptions hit 3.1B

Ericsson said the number of global mobile broadband subscribers grew by around 25 per cent year-on-year in the second quarter of 2015, taking the total to 3.1 billion by the end of the period.

Bouygues Telecom boasts 42% of mobile customers are now on 4G

Bouygues Telecom said it had 4.1 million 4G customers at the end of June this year, meaning that 42 per cent of its mobile customer base excluding M2M is now using the high-speed mobile service.

Vodafone Turkey takes lead in Turkish 4G tender

Vodafone Turkey emerged as the highest bidder in a 4G network tender process launched by the country's Information and Communication Technologies Authority (BTK) that aims to raise €2.3 billion ($2.6 billion) in total.

Ooredoo Qatar tasks Nokia with small cell network deployment

Ooredoo Qatar awarded a nationwide 3G and LTE small cell deployment contract to Nokia Networks following successful trials of the equipment vendor's infrastructure in the country's capital, Doha.

Ericsson, Swisscom claim European first in LTE carrier aggregation

Ericsson said Swisscom is the first operator in Europe to launch three-carrier aggregation combining LTE FDD and TDD modes in a commercial network on chipsets available from Qualcomm.

Sprint's Saw: Our network densification won't be 'a traditional slow and expensive build'

Sprint CTO John Saw said that Sprint's network densification, which will include thousands of new macro cell sites and tens of thousands of small cells, will not be "a traditional slow and expensive build."

Swisscom tests 450 Mbps LTE network, plans Wi-Fi calling launch

Swisscom said it is testing an LTE network offering data rates of up to 450 Mbps that it aims to launch by the year-end to meet growing mobile data demand.

RootMetrics: Verizon edges out AT&T, Sprint stays in No. 3 spot thanks to improved reliability

Verizon Wireless stayed slightly ahead of AT&T Mobility in terms of overall network performance, while Sprint maintained its lead over T-Mobile US in overall performance  thanks to improvements in mobile data performance and speeds as well as call and texting reliability, according to network testing firm RootMetrics.