Tony Melone, CTO, Verizon Wireless - rising stars in wireless

Tony Melone, CTO, Verizon Wireless – rising stars in wirelessAs the CTO of Verizon Wireless, Tony Melone has a big task ahead of him in 2010. Perhaps you've heard of Verizon's plans to deploy LTE in the coming year?

Verizon announced last year it will commercially launch 25 to 30 LTE markets by year-end 2010, covering 100 million POPs, and will match its current 3G footprint with LTE by the end of 2013--likely making it one of the first operators worldwide with a widespread LTE network.

Can Melone and his team pull of this ambitious goal? Have faith. Historically, Verizon has launched its network upgrades in several markets at once rather than just launching one market at a time, so it's not surprising the carrier plans to do the same with its LTE network.

And Verizon Wireless appears to be making steady progress. In August, Melone said the company completed its first successful LTE data call in Boston using the 3GPP Release 8 standard for the technology, following a similar successful test in Seattle. Further, Verizon Wireless disclosed that its forthcoming LTE network will provide average data speeds of 5-12 Mbps for downloads and 2-5 Mbps for uploads.

The company also turned heads earlier this month at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show when it and its LTE partners demonstrated a live LTE network running at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Though all participants cautioned that their wares were for demonstration purposes only, the event still served as a window to a possible LTE future. Check out the slideshow here.

Clearly, Melone and his team have a huge job ahead of them. And the industry will be avidly following all of Verizon's LTE deployment steps.

Tony Melone, CTO, Verizon Wireless - rising stars in wireless