2009 Year in Review: Verizon Wireless announces aggressive LTE plans

The news: TeliaSonera may have handed out the industry's first LTE contracts in January with a subsequent launch in two cities this month, but Verizon Wireless has some aggressive plans for LTE in the 700 MHz band. In February, it handed out contracts to Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent. It was a major coup for Ericsson, which has been trying for years to break further into the U.S. market. In addition, Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens are the key suppliers for the IMS network that will enable rich multimedia applications. Finally, the enhanced packet core is being provided by Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson and Starent Networks.

Verizon Wireless CTO Tony Melone confirmed in September that Verizon continues to move toward its plan of launching 25 to 30 commercial LTE markets by the end of 2010, and matching its current 3G footprint with LTE by the end of 2013.

Why it's important: Verizon Wireless will be the first industry test of widespread commercial LTE deployments in 2010.

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