Light Reading

Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)

Dan Jones
3/19/2013
50%
50%

It's Sunday night, Feb. 1, 2015; you're in the Ding Dong Lounge in New York City.

All around you people are hunched over their smartphones and tablets sending out videos, tweets and texts about that Superbowl-winning touchdown. The same scene is playing out in bars and restaurants down the street and across the city.

The 4G network you are connected to, however, doesn't slow down much or fall over with all the additional data being sent over the air.

That is the real promise of LTE-Advanced for carriers and -- eventually -- users too: the ability to offer a more reliable and consistent experience over 4G. It won't come quickly, easily or cheaply though.

The LTE-Advanced specification was fully defined by the 3GPP in April 2011 as part of Release 10 of the 4G spec. Along with WiMAX 2, LTE-Advanced was originally considered the first true fourth generation (4G) by the ITU because, in theory anyway, it met the conditions of maximum downlink speeds of 100Mbit/s when a user is on the move and up to 1Gbit/s for stationary downloads.

Carriers around the world are unlikely to achieve those kinds of speeds even when all the hardware and software pieces are actually in place. This is because achieving these speeds could require up to 100MHz in linked channels, which is just not feasible for many operators round the world.

LTE-Advanced will offer a data speed increase over current LTE networks by deploying upgrades at the radio access network (RAN) and handset. These include:

  • Carrier aggregation techniques that bond together two or more separate radio channels for more speed and capacity
  • Multiple input, multiple output (MIMO) antenna arrays of 2x2 or more on the devices and infrastructure for faster uplink and downlinks
  • Relay nodes, low power radios that will provide improved coverage and capacity at the cell edge of the network

As the 3GPP says LTE-Advanced is about supporting an "increased number of simultaneously active subscribers" on the network as well.

This is important -- consider that IDC predicts that LTE traffic will grow 207 percent in 2013. Factor in all the new smartphones, tablets and machine-to-machine devices coming and you can see that planning ahead for capacity and coverage density is just as important as speed, if not more so.

Hence, carriers like T-Mobile USA are getting in on the ground floor with networks that might be considered LTE-Advanced ready rather than full-blown LTE-Advanced right now.

Vendors like Broadcom Corp. have started to unveil LTE-Advanced modems for phones that support features like carrier aggregation in the last month or so that will go into commercial production in 2014. Though 2x2 MIMO antenna arrays are not uncommon on devices, larger arrays and bigger modems all start to become device size and battery concerns. So like LTE, laptops and data dongles are likely to be the first to get LTE-Advanced capabilities.

As you see, it will likely be sometime next year -- at the earliest -- before we get many affordable devices that can support LTE-Advanced and operators will need to build out network density as part of the march toward Advanced.

This should clue you in to something else as well. LTE-Advanced makes sense in a city where operators are supporting large and sometimes unpredictable flows of users and traffic. It may not make much financial sense to add more density to rural parts of the network.

So, LTE-Advanced probably won't be trickling down to Monowi, Neb. any time soon.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

(6)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
7/25/2014 | 4:52:15 PM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
Sad news for NYC dive bar fan, Light Reading's Ray Le Maistre, he will never get to see the original Ding Dong longue referenced in this piece:

http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archives/2014/07/upper_west_side_1.html
talking_heads
50%
50%
talking_heads,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/11/2013 | 1:47:10 PM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
What about new security features in LTE-A?
Renukab
50%
50%
Renukab,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/25/2013 | 3:56:39 PM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
Commercial
deployments of LTE-A are going to be seen in the market much more quickly than
people think. The big difference with LTE-A, over its predecessor GÇô LTE, is the
way in which it will be rolled out by international operators. As
opposed to a complete network upgrade, operators will deploy LTE-A
incrementally on a feature-by-feature basis. Operators will initially roll
LTE-A features that give them the greatest tactical advantages in the market.
For example, LTE-A features such as carrier aggregation, for contiguous and
non-contiguous spectrum allocations, and radio interference management and
suppression will be the first that operators consider. Operators will also be
very keen to leverage support in LTE-A for increased MIMO GÇô which helps to dramatically
improve spectral efficiency. We at Radisys are very well versed in in all
aspects of LTE-A and see it gaining market traction extremely rapidly. Radisys
recently announced that we are already developing the worldGÇÖs first commercial
LTE-A small cell with our partner Mindspeed.
Renukab
50%
50%
Renukab,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/25/2013 | 3:51:15 PM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
Commercial deployments of LTE-A are going to be seen in the market much more quickly than people think. The big difference with LTE-A, over its predecessor GÇô LTE, is the way in which it will be rolled out by international operators. As opposed to a complete network upgrade, operators will deploy LTE-A incrementally on a feature-by-feature basis. Operators will initially roll LTE-A features that give them the greatest tactical advantages in the market. For example, LTE-A features such as carrier aggregation, for contiguous and non-contiguous spectrum allocations, and radio interference management and suppression will be the first that operators consider. Operators will also be very keen to leverage support in LTE-A for increased MIMO GÇô which helps to dramatically improve spectral efficiency. We at Radisys are very well versed in in all aspects of LTE-A and see it gaining market traction extremely rapidly. Radisys recently announced that we are already developing the worldGÇÖs first commercial LTE-A small cell with our partner Mindspeed.
chuckj
50%
50%
chuckj,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/21/2013 | 12:27:42 AM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
The only way LTE Advanced can happen is, they pass a law that if the Ding Dong Lounge (or any customer) buys a small cell on his own and pays for its-áback-haul,-áthen none of the users that hook up to it have to pay for minutes or data to the carrier, but if the carrier puts it in and pays for the-áback-haul-áthen the carrier can charge all of the users for data and minutes. -á This way the establishment (or the customer) can do something about customer service because we know Telco's absolutely don't care about customer service, as apparent from ATT's plan to install 40,000 small cells in the next two years for a nation of 300+million, thousands of big and small cities and tens of thousands of small towns and townships and hundreds of thousands of small farms. -áThe Telco suppliers need to lobby for this with all their might or else they will all be driven to bankruptcy by-átheir-ácustomers one by one.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
3/19/2013 | 9:18:48 PM
re: Why You Should Care About LTE-Advanced (Eventually)
Remember that schedules can really slip on these chip development programs too. We'll se a lot of noise about LTE-Advanced devices this year but I suspect much of it will be hype.
More Blogs from Jonestown
The connected car is driving the IoT market now, but that's just the start of it.
It's the Claure and Legere show! Sprint and T-Mobile CEOs trade barbs -- or at least retweets -- over rival Super Bowl ads.
Google is now backing or actively exploring three ways of delivering cheaper Internet connectivity to the world: satellites, drones and balloons.
Flying killers turn into duckface enablers!
The scary thing is that this massive Las Vegas show could get even bigger, thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT).
Flash Poll
From The Founder
The New IP is actually bigger even than business. Like another hugely important tech that Light Reading is digging into right now, the New IP has the potential to change the world by fundamentally advancing what it is possible for people to achieve with communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Shares Its Vision of the Future of Mobile Networks Innovations

2|26|15   |   2:30   |   (0) comments


Mobile broadband is changing our lives. It's reshaping the Internet, industry, and society. It allows us to freely connect with one another anytime, anywhere. At this year's Mobile World Congress, Huawei will share its latest insights and newest ideas and technologies that will shape the future of MBB. They will showcase their end-to-end MBB solutions that will ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accelerate Digitizing, Boost Digital Business

2|26|15   |   6:14   |   (0) comments


A new digital revolution is leading us to a better connected world. Together with millions of digital partners, Huawei will help CSPs to build their digital service ecosystem and aggregate a wide variety of digital services. In this video, we find out how Huawei is going to help CSPs implement digital operations.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Secret Recipe to Enabling Hyper-Growth Industries

2|26|15   |   3:38   |   (0) comments


With a number of successful cases on network capability exposure, Huawei is going to share the secret recipe to enabling hyper-growth markets with a step-by-step approach.
LRTV Documentaries
BTE 2015 Is Bigger & Even Better

2|25|15   |   03:13   |   (4) comments


This year's Big Telecom Event (BTE) in Chicago is going to provide more opportunities than ever for networking, getting to grips with key industry challenges and opportunities and, equally as important, having some fun.
LRTV Interviews
Light Reading ICT Leaders Roundtable at MWC 2015

2|12|15   |   1:07   |   (2) comments


On Sunday March 1, 2015, Light Reading will host an ICT Leaders Roundtable in partnership with Huawei. At this half-day event, CIOs, analysts and researchers will discuss key industry trends like virtualization in the cloud with a specific focus on new business models. Located at the luxurious Renaissance Hotel near the Fira Barcelona, space is limited so please ...
LRTV Documentaries
Going Green in 2015

2|12|15   |   02:04   |   (0) comments


Energy efficiency is set to be an incredibly hot topic in the telecom industry this year.
LRTV Custom TV
SDN & NFV: Where Are We Going From Here?

2|11|15   |   11:27   |   (0) comments


Vitesse Semiconductor CTO Martin Nuss gives his perspective on why SDN and NFV should be tightly interconnected and how he sees the industry moving forward.
LRTV Documentaries
Time for Gigabit Europe?

2|9|15   |   01:27   |   (4) comments


Gigabit broadband networks are springing up all around the US and they'll soon become more commonplace in Europe.
LRTV Interviews
Brocade Brings New IP Vision to 2020 Vision Executive Summit

2|3|15   |   4:23   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading gathered telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Brocade's Kelly Herrell shared his company's strategy at ...
LRTV Interviews
Brocade's Kelly Herrell on the New IP

2|2|15   |   12:36   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Brocade VP of Software Networking Kelly Herrell at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Brocade's approach to the New IP, the future of the telecom industry, and more.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
Upcoming Live Events
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Net neutrality, broadband services and the current outlook on data consumption, as presented by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Hot Topics
Cyber Security Expert Warns: You're Doing It Wrong
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/23/2015
10 Weirdly Useful IoT Devices
Eryn Leavens, Copy Desk Editor, 2/24/2015
Small Cells Enabling Location Services
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/25/2015
FCC Adopts Title II Rules
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 2/26/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Check out Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he had to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.
G'day! And welcome to an entirely new feature on Light Reading -- our weekly "CEO-to-CEO" interview.