UPDATED: Verizon restores service after LTE network falters again

Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) restored service to its LTE network Wednesday afternoon after yet another LTE service outage, a situation that contrasts sharply with the carrier's relentless "most reliable network" marketing.

"After a brief issue this morning, 4G LTE service is fully restored," Verizon spokeswoman Debi Lewis told FierceWireless. The update came a few hours after users reported the LTE service disruption. According to Verizon, the outage began around 6:30 a.m. EST.

"VZW is investigating customer issues in connecting to the 4G LTE data network. 3G data, voice and text services are operating reliably," Verizon said in a Twitter statement Wednesday morning.

According to various reports, the outage has affected Verizon LTE customers across the country.

A reader comment on Engadget summed most users' position on the topic: "I've had my Galaxy Nexus since Dec 20th and this is like the 3rd outage I've had to suffer through. However, I think it's like the 5th outage since the beginning of December 2011. Outages will happen...but...get it together Verizon...we pay you a lot of money each month so we expect our service!"

Verizon experienced three brief LTE outages in December and four overall in 2011 (it also had an outage in April).  In December, Verizon explained that the 2011 outages were due to technical problems with Verizon's IP Multimedia Subsystem architecture. Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU) and Nokia Siemens Networks are the key suppliers for Verizon's IMS network. (Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) are Verizon's main radio access network vendors for its LTE network.) Verizon said customers lost service because the carrier's IMS core could not recognize them.

Verizon's LTE network now covers 196 markets and more than 200 million POPs.

For more:
- see this Verizon tweet
- see this Engadget article
- see this The Verge article

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Article updated Feb. 22 with updated information from Verizon.