by Andrew J. Shepherd
Sprint 4G Rollout Updates
Friday, August 19, 2016 - 2:04 AM MDT
Earlier this week, the two HTC 2016 Nexus handsets -- codenamed "Marlin" and "Sailfish" -- were caught in the net of the FCC OET (Office of Engineering and Technology) authorization database.
While Google has yet to reveal them officially as Nexus handsets, that HTC is the manufacturer of choice this year has been a heavily leaked secret the past few months. And the circumstantial evidence now is overwhelming.
The FCC grantee code, NM8G, appends a "G" to the usual NM8 grantee code for HTC branded devices, and the user manual declaration document posits that the final draft manual will be available publicly on the Google web site in the Nexus support section. Neither handset has been identified or named individually, though the 2PW4100 likely is the larger "Marlin," the 2PW2100, the smaller "Sailfish."
Both are at least the domestic variants with airlink support across the board for VZW, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. No international variants have passed through the FCC OET. Unless international variants do get authorized in the coming days/weeks, the two HTC Nexus handsets could end up in uncharted waters as single variants for the world, covering all supported international LTE bands, too. Full disclosure, however, probably will have to wait until the Google announcement event when accompanying tech specs are published.
In the meantime, the domestic RF uplink test results and declarations are out in the world. S4GRU will not run down every last RF capability. But, just to confirm, some of the highlights are...
- LTE bands 2/4/5/7/12/13/17/25/26/29/30/41
- VoLTE bands 2/4/5/12/13 (for VZW, AT&T, and T-Mobile)
- Downlink 2x/3x CA
- Dual, switched WWAN Tx antennas 0 and 1, bottom and top
- 802.11ac 2x MIMO
The primary purpose of this article is to present a retrospective on the uplink RF powers of the current 2013-2016 era of 3GPP/3GPP2, Sprint compatible Nexus handsets as well as two recent HTC handsets. Those domestic variant Nexus handsets and the Sprint variant HTC One A9 and HTC 10 are the RF and design forebears of the 2016 Nexus handsets. So, how do the new kids on the block hold up to their predecessors?
S4GRU culled relevant data across all eight handsets from thousands of pages of authorization documents in the FCC OET. For the radiated power figures, the usual clauses about lab testing versus real world performance and uplink versus downlink always apply. The figures represent best averaged and rounded estimates of maximum uplink ERP/EIRP test results provided to the FCC OET in the authorization filings for the domestic variant Nexus devices and Sprint variant HTC devices. See below:
The numbers can speak for themselves. The LG, Motorola, and Huawei manufactured handsets generally are more powerful. The HTC handsets are not blatantly deficient -- though the One A9 comes uncomfortably close -- but the 2016 Nexus do spec out typically average or slightly below.