Vodafone: LTE viable competitor to fixed broadband

Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology will be a viable competitor to fixed broadband links, said Professor Michael Walker, group R&D director with Vodafone at the Wireless 2.0 conference in the UK. He noted that the 100 Mbps of FTTH (fiber to the home) is the same as the theoretical maximum throughput of LTE, with wireless Internet providing a better and richer experience. That statement may give some hints as to how Vodafone might position the technology in the market.

With LTE capacity on 20 megahertz of spectrum being an order of magnitude higher than today's HSPA networks, Walker said the first real field trials are showing downlink speeds of 15Mbit/s, with 4.5 spectral efficiency. the center of the LTE cell delivered 20Mbit/s in the field trial with the edge of the cell delivering 1.3Mbit/s.  

Vodafone is learning from its disappointments with 3G, said Walker. Having been stung by the experience of paying billions for spectrum in the 3G auctions and then seeing the technology fail to achieve the promised performance, Walker said Vodafone would ensure LTE worked as advertised before committing to deployment time frames or acquiring new spectrum

"3G was going to give 1Mbit/s but in some places you were lucky to get 300Kbit/s. It's not going to be like that with LTE," he said.

For more:
- see Electronics Weekly

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