ITU Backtracks on '4G' Definition

5:10 PM -- The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) kicked off an all-out marketing war in October when it proclaimed that Long Term Evolution (LTE) and WiMax were not, in fact, 4G. Hence, the term FauxG was born and the term "4G" rendered meaningless. (See ITU Says '4G' Isn't and The Battle of FauxG.)

But, now, it appears the ITU is backpedaling on its definition. Buried in an ITU press release from last week, ABI Research analyst Philis Solis noticed that it said that the term 4G is designated for LTE-Advanced and WirelessMAN-Advanced, although "it is recognized that this term, while undefined, may also be applied to the forerunners of these technologies, LTE and WiMax, and to other evolved 3G technologies providing a substantial level of improvement in performance and capabilities with respect to the initial third-generation systems now deployed." (See ITU Ratifies LTE-Advanced.)

So, essentially, the ITU is claiming that even HSPA+ is "4G," whereas before it said not even LTE was worthy of the moniker.

The new definition doesn't change anything. It's still the network speeds, bandwidth, and latency that matter more than marketing, but the messaging is getting watered down.

It's all just fauxG to us now.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

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