LTE Watch: Verizon Pushes Ahead With Rural Plans

Verizon Wireless added some details to its plans for rural LTE partnerships this week, in our summary of mobile broadband news.

  • In May, Verizon revealed that it wants to partner with rural operators to speed up its Long-Term Evolution (LTE) deployment. Any deals would see Verizon license spectrum to carriers for a small fee, and either Verizon or the licensee could install the LTE equipment. This week, Verizon launched a Website to let potential partners know what it is looking for in rural LTE mates:

      We are seeking companies that can assist in bringing the benefits of 4G LTE service to rural areas that currently lack Verizon Wireless coverage. Verizon Wireless may work with rural companies that have towers and backhaul capabilities, even if those companies are not currently wireless operators. Together, we will plan and coordinate a local LTE deployment schedule that makes sense for both Verizon Wireless and the rural company that we are collaborating with. (See LTE Watch: Verizon Shows Off in Boston.)

  • While rivals like Verizon and MetroPCS Inc. (NYSE: PCS) push to deliver at least some LTE markets this year, Leap Wireless International Inc. (Nasdaq: LEAP) is taking a more cautious approach. RCR Wireless reports that Leap is planning LTE deployments within the next three to four years, starting with a data hotspot-style approach in metropolitan markets.

  • Backhaul vendor Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA), meanwhile, is seeing its shares drop on fears that it will lose business at AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) as the operator moves to LTE.

  • Need a quick refresh on the differences between LTE and WiMax? Wired has just posted this handy guide for you to peruse.

  • Telia Company talked devices and video at this week's Light Reading virtual LTE event. Some of the services that the operator wants to run on the network, however, are downright wacky. Check out this demonstration of a real-time "cooking chief" application from the Swedish operator:

    — Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

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