Archive for the ‘Cellular’ Category

Next-gen 802.16m WiMAX Standard Gets Approved By IEEE

  • April 2, 2011 3:18 pm

Despite the slow uptake of the so called 4G technology publicly known as “WiMAX”, the IEEE is hard at work prepping said technology’s successor — 802.16m. This new standard will no doubt carry the name “WiMAX 2″ when the time comes for a mass rollout. For now though, that name is uncertain. What is certain, however, is that 802.16m will be fast. The theoretical maximum as stated by the IEEE is 300Mbps which puts it at twice the rated speed of LTE. However, when compared to LTE-advanced and its 1Gbps peak download rate (theoretical), it’s not nearly as exciting. Nevertheless, WiMAX supporters should be pleased seeing as the current adoption and real-world speeds attained with current WiMAX networks leave quite a bit to be desired.

Presser after the break…

T-Mobile Begins 42Mbps HSPA+ Network Rollout.

  • March 22, 2011 6:31 am

AT&T merger be damned, T-Mobile is pressing on with their HSPA+ network. The latest upgrade the Magenta giant is pushing out will peg Speedtest at up to 42Mbps in Las Vegas, New York, and Orlando. Later this year, Chicago and a further expansion of New York’s HSPA+ network will drive the speed forward. According to T-Mobile, by mid-year 2011 up to 140 million Americans in 25 different markets will have access to the faster HSPA+ speeds by way of 25 new HSPA+ capable devices the company hopes to release throughout 2011. But the question sitting in the back of everyone’s mind: How will the ongoing AT&T takeover play into T-Mobile’s deals/plans? We shall see…

Verizon LTE Coming To Fort Wayne, Lafayette, And Indianapolis Later This Year.

  • March 21, 2011 12:37 pm

After spending some time with our HTC Thunderbolt review unit, we’ve come away downright in love with LTE and the speeds it provides. Naturally, those currently not being blanketed by VZW’s LTE waves would like to know when it’s coming so they too can joy in on the wireless fun. For our fellow Indiana friends, I can at least relay that the wait is nearing an end. Specifically, residents of Indianapolis, Lafayette, and Fort Wayne will soon be able to fly around the net at 5-12Mbps speeds.

Eagle-eyed readers may chime in and point out that West Lafayette already has LTE service — but this is strictly for Purdue University and the surrounding area. The Lafayette mentioned here is a much larger swath of land. Unfortunately, we still don’t have any hard info on exact dates, though you can all be sure that once we know, you’ll know. For now, take that little nugget and cling to it.

(Keep it real, James)

T-Mobile Launching Jet 2.0 4G March 23rd.

  • March 16, 2011 6:56 am

TmoNews has scored some news regarding the next generation of laptop 3G/4G sticks to drop on the Magenta carrier’s network. Specifically, the latest 4G-capable Jet 2.0 4G will be hitting retail shelves March 23rd. Picking up the new hardware will net users up to 21Mbps speeds on the downlink side of things and an integrated memory card slot. If the only thing holding you back thus far from picking up a 3G/4G wireless modem has been price, T-Mobile prides themselves in being one of the best values in town. Though, now that the recent price increase on *usable* data plans has brought things up to $49.99, they aren’t quite as lust-worthy as before. Nevertheless, options are options…

NFC Not Debuting On iPhone 5.

  • March 14, 2011 12:01 am

Despite persistant rumors saying otherwise, new evidence is pointing to an iPhone 5 without NFC capabilities. Such claims were apparently made by Apple during meetings with European cellular carriers. According to reports from the Independent, Apple is waiting on clearer standards as well as waiting for their own NFC technology to mature before they make their move. Apple’s NFC technology would unsurprisingly revolve around iTunes for the exchange of cash.

Similar rumors pegged the iPad 2 as debuting with NFC technologies as well. Though as we’ve all seen, such rumors never quite came to fruition, as the iPad 2 is NFC-less. With projected sales of NFC payments slated to hit €110bn by 2015, it’s definitely in every mobile manufacturer and cellular providers’ best interests to get a grip on this technology sooner rather than later. Hopefully 2012 brings clearer standards and/or Apple’s own NFC technology ready to battle with the likes of Google’s own NFC-capable Android devices and any other contenders that enter the market space.

GSM Operators Coming Together On Global NFC Standard Set To Launch In 2012.

  • February 21, 2011 12:08 pm

It’s rare that we see cellular operators around the world come together on one single spec. Often times, each respective carrier believes they can engineer a workable solution better than anyone else. The end result ends up being the release of various “solutions” (ie: specifications) with no clear winner, meaning a headache for multi-carrier/global devices. But at least in the case of NFC, global love appears to be growing larger. According to the GSMA Chairmen and CEO of Telecom Italia, Franco Bernabe, 2012 will be the year we see an official NFC spec released. So far, support has been promised by the following carriers: América Móvil, Axiata Group Berhad, Bharti, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, KT Corporation, MTS, Orange, Qtel Group, SK Telecom, SOFTBANK MOBILE, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telekom Austria Group, Telenor and Vodafone.

Having a single, universal standard will go a long way into accelerating NFC adoption for both hardware and software services alike. And even though the official NFC spec isn’t scheduled for public consumption until 2012, mobile hardware manufacturers and software developers are already dipping their toes in the NFC water. Add to that the growing interesting with this years CES and MWC and you’ve got quite the story in the making. We can hardly wait.

Sprint To Evaluate WiMax Adoption Later This Year. Possible Switch To LTE In The Cards. #mwc

  • February 15, 2011 5:38 pm

Could your future Evo 4G 5 run off of LTE instead of WiMAX? That’s a very real possibility according to statements made by Sprint’s Senior Vice President of Networks, Bob Azzi. According to Azzi, Sprint will be evaluating WiMAX adoption and customer movement from 3G to 4G over the next 4-6 months. After this “study time”, Sprint will apparently make an important decision as to whether they should continue along pushing WiMAX or jump ship to LTE.

For the record, Sprint has begun deploying a healthy amount of multi-mode equipment, meaning such a switch wouldn’t be as bad as originally thought. A simple swap of a baseband card and software upgrade is all that’s needed to make complete the deal. Sounds rather exciting to us. Though, early adopters of WiMAX equipment surely can’t be feeling as intrigued as we are.

WiMAX To Cover 1 Billion People By End Of 2011.

  • February 15, 2011 8:13 am

As we sit here and watch HSPA+ speeds and coverage continually grow along with LTE’s own advancements in recent months, looking at WiMAX draws about a very different story. At over 2+ years now, the WiMAX rollout in the U.S. is disappointingly slow. But something must be going alright as according to WiMAX Forum President and Chairman, Ron Resnick, “WiMAX networks continued to grow at a steady pace, despite a slow global economic recovery and competitive technologies starting to enter the market.” It’s worth noting that a good deal of the WiMAX expansion that occurred in 2010 did so in Europe and abroad. However, we have noticed here in the U.S. that the last ~6 months has seen quicker than average WiMAX developments too. Though we would say progress merely went from near dead to limping along with one good leg.

Things are looking up for WiMAX, however. India is set to rebound from economic and network issues that prevented worthwhile WiMAX penetration in the country adding a large potential user base.

Now if only we could get more and faster WiMAX here in the U.S…

Voice Over LTE Coming Mid-2011 On Verizon’s LG Revolution.

  • February 8, 2011 3:00 pm

The LG Revolution isn’t here quite yet, but already we have something very exciting to look forward too — Voice over LTE (VoLTE). It is the first handset coming to Verizon that will allow customers to place phone calls over LTE’s wonderful waves instead of the ol’ stingy ones of 1x/EV-DO. Luckily for us, the original launch of VoLTE has been pushed up to sometime this summer to coincide with the Revolution’s launch, meaning higher voice quality all around. Though we can’t get too hasty with tossing out our old CDMA equipment. The move to VoLTE will be excruciatingly slow and spread out over many years. Hardware manufacturers and yes, even Verizon, will have to catch up. It was nice knowin’ ya CDMA…