Verizon Tests LTE in Seattle & Boston
Two days ago we reported LTE For Verizon Information showed up and now Endgaget is reporting that Verizon has completed its first tests on its LTE network. On July 15th, Verizon tested LTE in Seattle and today the tests were done in Boston. LG and Samsung provided unnamed devices, but Verizon has stated that they have Motorola in the pipeline as well. Seattle and Boston have 10 LTE cell sites and by 2010, Verizon says they will have, "up to 30" maket up and running.
Endgaget spoke with Verizon CTO Tony Melone and here were the take aways:
- Though they're not talking speeds with these trials specifically, they're confident in saying that everything's in line for 7-12Mbps down and 3-5Mbps up at launch.
- The trials are being conducted on commercial LTE base station hardware, but everything else is prototype (and changing very rapidly). The end-user equipment doesn't currently resemble anything you'd actually buy.
- Data modems will be the priority at launch, which makes sense considering the amount of industry flux with regard to voice over LTE. Though Verizon believes the solution will ultimately be some form of VoIP, there are several outstanding issues, including handling of 911 calls.
- Everything in the trial so far leads Verizon to believe that they're on track for a 30-market launch in 2010.
- This doesn't spell the end of EV-DO deployments -- far from it. Melone says that upgrades could continue all the way through to the initial LTE launch and beyond.