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4G just false advertising...for now

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Migrated from Original Forum. Originally Posted 10 January 2012


Apparently, all these new wireless data networks that carriers are advertising as "4G" are really still only meeting the 3G standard. 4G is technically 100Mbps mobile access and 1Gbps stationary access max speeds, which LTE, WiMAX and HSPA+ can't produce in their current state. The speeds that these network technologies provide are way better than what we have come to accept as 3G, but not up to the standards set by the IMT.


Once LTE advanced and WiMAX 2 are rolled out, they will be true 4G networks and blow the doors off LTE, WiMAX and HSPA+. Until then I will roll my eyes when these technologies are continually billed as 4G. P.S. I don't know if we will even see WiMAX 2 in the states as everyone is flocking to the LTE train (which is a GSM technology).

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Migrated from Original Forum. Originally Posted 10 January 2012


4G has been downgraded as a marketing ploy pure and simple and has little value anymore, at least to the initiated. Even now, AT&T brands everything as LTE and leaves 4G in the background. Although LTE Adv is "true" 4G, it will be interesting to see how that little tidbit is marketed in 2013. And yes, we will never see WiMAX 2 in the U.S.

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Migrated from Original Forum. Originally Posted 10 January 2012



I'm not a big believer in trying to keep the 4G moniker "pure." There is a huge evolution in speed and latency from EVDO to WiMax/LTE, that it is definitely worthy of a new title. And 4G is as good as any.


In reality, LTE-Advanced as deployed by American carriers is going to perform around what LTE does today. So, even though LTE-A is capable of speeds much higher than LTE and will technically qualify as a "true 4G" technology, speeds aren't going to go up for consumers.


A Verizon LTE 10x10 FD-LTE carrier would perform at the same speeds as a Verizon LTE-Advanced 10x10 carrier. Where LTE-Advanced gets faster speeds is through channel/carrier aggregation and MIMO. So if the carrier has more spectrum available, they can start pasting it together with LTE-Advanced.


However, I don't think consumers have much use for LTE that is faster than 30MB if there are 2GB and 5GB caps. You can make it 100MB speeds, but no one will know the difference. And consumers certainly aren't going to be willing to pay more for it.


LTE-Advanced is going to be more about wireless co's being able to take small disconnected chunks of spectrum and aggregating it together to make something perform like a bigger 20MHz chunk. This is something that both Sprint and AT&T have announced they are going to do.


So, since 20MB to 30MB download speeds are all we are going to see in the U.S. for the next 3 to 5 years, we might as well call everything that performs like that as 4G. There will be no 100MB+ deployed mobile LTE in the U.S. in the forseeable future by anyone. Not even Clearwire (which might hit 60MB). But Clearwire will just be a whole bunch of 2500MHz islands, and not a cohesive national network.

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Migrated from Original Forum. Originally Posted 10 January 2012


I would personally be happy with speeds around 5-10 Mbps from mobile data today, but the future screens, processors, memory and apps will combine to make smarter, more versatile phones that are just going to get more and more data intensive. Maybe I am dating myself but I remember when the internet was predominately accessed by dial-up 56 kbps connections and was optimized for that connection, now you would tear your hair out waiting for your homepage to load at that speed. I also remember when sprint vision was text only and was just a small intranet (yes, I meant to say intranet) site set up by sprint and was still slow. It won't be long and we will outgrow the 20-30 Mbps (top speeds) that this "4G" offers and everyone will be pining for 5G because sprint's 4G is so overloaded and slow. If Sprint's EVDO rev A was performing at or near its capacity, we wouldn't all be screaming for 4G, I could certainly deal with 1.5 Mbps 3G on the phone with WiFi at home and work, but it is all a marketing scheme to add or keep customers with the "newest technology". If all the carriers were claiming "faster speeds on 'our' 3G network" nobody would care. But first 4G was the household term, then 4G LTE. All the customers line up for it and are fed a line of BS.

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