October 21, 2010
Verizon Wireless has just added Charleston, W.V., to its already-announced 39-city deployment of Long Term Evolution (LTE) in 2010.
Verizon wireless CTO Tony Melone and local senator Jay Rockefeller plan to talk more about the deployment in a press conference next Wednesday. The operator plans to deploy LTE in 10 metro areas in West Virginia by 2013.
This news means that Verizon now expects to deploy LTE in 40 cities in the US, and more than 60 airports, by the end of 2010. Verizon announced 38 cities at the CTIA this month, said that a 39th (Detroit) was nearly ready to go, and has now added Charleston to that list. The operator can be expected to keep adding cities as it sorts out issues with interference and other problems at various sites. (See CTIA 2010: Verizon Ups LTE Launch to 38 Cities.)
Verizon is promising average data download rates of 5 to 12 Mbit/s on the 700MHz network. The network should launch with dongles and PC cards initially, with tablets and smartphones expected in the first half of 2011.
Low-cost prepaid player MetroPCS Inc. (NYSE: PCS) was the first out of the gate with LTE this September and has now launched in Vegas and Dallas, with Detroit on the way. Verizon, however, is plotting a much larger rollout, with around 100 million people covered by end of 2010. (See MetroPCS Saddles Up LTE in Dallas.)
Verizon, however, still hasn't said exactly when it will launch, although LR Mobile has heard that December is likely. (See Verizon Readies '4G' for December.)
— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile
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