Information released by the 10 operators involved with the LTE SAE Trial Initiative (LSTI) would indicate that the testing of the technology remains at the very early stages.
Albeit that commercial LTE networks are up and running at TeliaSonera in Norway and Sweden--while TDC, Verizon and NTT DoCoMo plan to launch this year, the tests created by the LSTI group were simply designed to ensure that the LTE and EPC standards are implemented in the same way across all operators and vendors.
According to a reported carried by Lightreading, while LSTI has already completed proof-of-concept and some interoperability testing, the group has moved on to customer trials at some mobile operators. Gabriel Brown, senior analyst at Heavy Reading, said that these latest trials were focusing on network latency, state transition, throughput and cell capacity/cell load.
"These are key--they're what people often notice, rather than the actual bit rate," said Brown. However, while the LSTI test results are indicative of the industry's current progress, the data provided was only what the operators had agreed to share with each other in this initiative. "It's representative, but not the full picture," he said, noting that operators have their own LTE test programmes.
Remi Thomas, director of the LTE EPC programme at France Telecom, said that the trials indicated that latency was 17 to 27 milliseconds for a round trip measured from a user device to an application server in the network.
The 10 operators involved with LSTI are: Bouygues Telecom, China Mobile, France Telecom, eMobile, NTT DoCoMo, SFR, T-Mobile International, Telecom Italia, Telefónica and Vodafone.
For more on this story:
LTE : Vodafone to field test roaming and interop
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Telefonica O2 to test LTE in six countries, but no deployment plans
Nokia Siemens Networks conducts LTE interoperability testing with four leading device vendors