Alltel joins AT&T, Verizon Wireless with LTE roadmap

During its first quarter conference call with investors, Alltel announced that it was committed to evolving its network to LTE over the next five years. The move makes Alltel the second biggest CDMA carrier in the U.S., after Verizon Wireless, to commit to the LTE standard, even though LTE was originally on the GSM evolution path.

"We do currently plan to move towards LTE in the three-to-five year timeframe vs. WiMAX, but we're still early in that," President and CEO Scott Ford said during the call.

Alltel's COO Jeff Fox, however, noted that the carrier won't be talking seriously about LTE this year. "We are working through our planning phase and will be talking to our board about all that over the next two quarters," Fox said. "Certainly there's no money for 4G evolution anytime in our near-term plans, and so I think from a cash-flow perspective you should not expect to see us talking about 4G anytime at least in 2008."

For more on Alltel's LTE choice:
- read this RCR article