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Google's Pixel 2: No Gigabit LTE for You, Either!

Dan Jones
10/11/2017
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Google's new Pixel 2 smartphone may be at the forefront of Android design but it may not hit the so-called "Gigabit LTE" heights its hardware is capable of.

The Pixel 2 has a Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) Snapdragon 835 chip onboard, which is the first "Gigabit LTE" chip that could deliver theoretical peaks of 1 Gbit/s on downloads.

But Light Reading hears that the search giant has rate-limited the chip to 800 Mbit/s on its newest flagship, similar to the way that Apple is rumored to have throttled its latest iPhone 8 and iPhone X devices to 600 Mbit/s. (See Apple's New iPhones: No Gigabit LTE for You!)

Light Reading has asked Google for any comment or explanation it can offer on this. We've had no reply yet.

Note that in the real world, Gigabit LTE will probably deliver average speeds more like 100 Mbit/s to 300 Mbit/s. (See When Is a Gig Not a Gig? When It's Gigabit LTE!)

With that in mind, consider this: Even with throttling, the Pixel 2 will still be one of the faster Android phones available. Light Reading understands it could be up to 20% faster (think 200Mbit/s peaks) than all but the latest Samsung devices -- the S8 and the Note 8 -- available on US networks.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

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kq4ym
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kq4ym,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/20/2017 | 8:05:38 AM
Re: Network considerations
It would seem likely that the throttling is a factor of expanding battery life or maybe heat issues. While providers might like seeing their heavy users throttled by the devices I would guess it's not a conspiracy between Google and those folks yet.
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/12/2017 | 2:36:20 PM
Re: Network considerations
It is *starting* to roll out in the US now.

My take is that by 2020-21, you'll be upgrading to a 5G phone. So you might be buying your last -- or last but 1 -- pure 4G LTE phone. I'd like to get one that improves in performance over the next couple of years as more Gigabit LTE networks arrive, hence I'd like a Gigabit LTE-capable phone.

YMMV.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/12/2017 | 1:05:34 PM
Re: Network considerations
I'm sure there are valid reasons for this. My question is: Where is Gigabit LTE even available? If I had a phone that supported it, am I even in a place where it is useful. 
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/11/2017 | 5:26:40 PM
Re: Network considerations
Possibly. Might also be to not highlight which ones have started to implement Gigabit LTE yet too.
Research15258
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Research15258,
User Rank: Light Beer
10/11/2017 | 10:41:55 AM
Network considerations
Perhaps service providers have asked them to do this so heavier users will not collectively overload their networks. For most people, high data rates mean they will be on and off the network faster, but heavier users may overload the network. Another reason might be battery life / power consumption considerations.
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