Korean LTE Handsets in 2010?

12:45 PM -- South Korean site DigiTimes is reporting that domestic vendors LG Electronics Inc. (London: LGLD; Korea: 6657.KS) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC) may be among the first to deliver Long-Term Evolution (LTE) handsets, sometime in 2010.

The companies have been working on LTE modems for a while now. LG even showed off a modem at Mobile World Congress this year, promising that its chip "can achieve wireless download speeds of 60 Mbit/s and upload speeds of 20 Mbit/s." (See Gearing Up for LTE.)

Technology, as ever though, is a game of two sides, and even as LTE out of Korea seems to be advancing, Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) might be lagging slightly.

Our sister publication, EE Times Europe, has written up a report based a research note from Deutsche Bank AG that says that Qualcomm may not have chipsets for LTE PC cards available until 2010, and silicon for mobile phones will only sample in the middle of that year, which could mean another year or more before they turn up in commercial handsets.

None of this should be a huge surprise to Unstrung readers, however. We reported back in March that general availability of LTE handsets could be expected to lag the deployment of commercial networks in 2010 by at least a year and very likely more. (See LTE Phones Will Lag Behind Networks .) — Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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