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Verizon CTO: LTE launch on track

16 февраля 2010

Dick Lynch, Verizon CTO, was always going to be hard pushed to trump his show-stopper announcement at last year's MWC event when he revealed the names of the wireless giant's LTE suppliers.  And so it proved to be.

Nonetheless, he was confident that the LTE rollout timetable he set last year - going live in 25 to 30 US markets by the end of 2010 - was still on track.

"In Boston and Seattle, we're in phase 4 [the final phase] of trials," said Lynch at a press conference hosted by the GSMA. "All our suppliers have worked well together and there is no doubt that we will not make our LTE launch."

Lynch added that he expected between eight to ten LTE devices (all dongles) to be available at launch.

Verizon's LTE RAN partners are Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson. Starent Networks (now owned by Cisco) is the packet core vendor, while Nokia Siemens Networks and Alcatel-Lucent have been selected as key suppliers for the IP Multi-Media Subsystem (IMS) network.

Despite all the hype surrounding LTE peak rates in excess of 300Mbps (in lab conditions), Verizon's launch speeds will be much more modest.  Verizon says its service will offer an average downlink data speed of between 5Mbps and 12Mbps at launch, while the average uplink speed is projected at between 2Mbs and 5Mbps. A major contributing factor to the lower speeds is Verizon's 700MHz spectrum, which it is using to roll out LTE nationwide in the US (700MHz is more suited to wide area and lower-speed coverage than higher frequencies).

Accompanying Lynch's assurances on LTE rollout was the announcement that Verizon Wireless, along with KDDI and China Telecom (two other major CDMA mobile operators) has become a member of the GSMA Association.  The CDMA and GSM camps, once bitter 2G enemies, are both moving in the same direction (LTE) and so it makes sense to collaborate on standardisation efforts going forward.

A key part of this collaborative effort will be on standardising the delivery of voice and SMS over LTE. To that end, the GSMA announced Monday that it has adopted the work of the One Voice Initiative (done by a collaboration of major mobile operators and suppliers) ‘to drive the global mobile industry towards a standard way of delivering voice and messaging services for LTE'. The Voice over LTE (VoLTE) initiative has the backing of more than 40organisations from across the mobile ecosystem, says the GSMA.

"I hope this announcement will put an end to the [negative] rumours of voice and SMS over LTE," says Alex Sinclair, Chief Technology and Strategy Officer at the GSMA


Источник: Mobile Europe

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