T-Mobile International wants LTE fast

T-Mobile International says it will skip HSPA+ and go straight to LTE, a move no doubt welcomed by vendors such as Motorola that are anxious to sell LTE as quickly as possible.

"If I need to invest into more hardware, I think it's better to start early [with LTE]. LTE is a more future-oriented technology," CTO Joachim Horn told Unstrung. He added that the operator will only deploy HSPA as long as there isn't a need to replace hardware. "We'll do every other efficiency increase that's software-based," he said. That means T-Mobile can boost its current 7.2 Mbps HSDPA network up to 14.4 Mbps on the downlink but going further to HSPA+ will require MIMO antennas.

Other operators plan to continue milking their HSPA networks by adding HSPA+. AT&T Mobility last month reiterated its position at the 4G Executive Summit in Chicago that its HSPA and HSPA+ 3G network technology still had a lot of life left in it, and that LTE would not be rolled out for at least another three years--and probably not on a large commercial scale for another five years.

T-Mobile's revelation is good news to vendors such as Motorola, which doesn't really have an HSPA story and has been heavily developing OFDMA-based WiMAX and LTE. Ericsson, on the other hand, has been pushing for upgrades to HSPA.

For more:
- read Unstrung

Related articles:
AT&T reiterates: LTE a long way off
AT&T's short-term answer to WiMAX: HSPA Rel. 7


Like this story? Subscribe to FierceWireless!

The Wireless industry is an ever-changing world where big ideas come along daily. Our subscribers rely on FierceWireless as their must-read source for the latest news, analysis and data on this increasingly competitive marketplace. Sign up today to get wireless news and updates delivered to your inbox and read on the go.