WiMAX, LTE and the 4G promise

All the big vendors are planning to tout their 4G wares at the upcoming CTIA conference. The race is on to establish LTE leadership so vendors are gearing up for the latest battle. In the U.S., both Verizon Wireless and AT&T have announced plans to migrate to LTE.

Danny Locklear, director of wireless product marketing at Nortel, said in an interview that the infrastructure vendor believes it can differentiate itself from competitors by focusing on LTE for CDMA operators. Locklear also says that rumors that CDMA is declining are wrong and he expects there to be a lot of focus on Rev. A applications such as VOIP and video at the conference. "There are new players and large expansions taking place. CDMA technology will be healthy for the next three years," Locklear said.

On the WiMAX front, interoperability is the focus as different devices or consumer premises equipment, are being tested. CTIA may be too early for WiMAX devices to make their debut but vendors say the interoperability will be a
hot topic at the confab.

"Multiple vendors and CPEs are doing interoperability testing and getting certification," said Tom Gruba, senior director of WIMAX product marketing for Motorola, in an interview. "That is going on now."

Of course, all eyes will be on Sprint, which is gearing up for the commercial launch of its first few WiMAX markets. Dan Hesse, Sprint's new CEO is scheduled to keynote the conference on April 1 and Barry West, CTO and president of Xohm will be the keynote speaker at FierceMarkets' Path to 4G collocated conference on April 2 at 4:15 p.m. --Sue