Posts tagged ‘US Cellular’

Interview: Vice President, Advanced Technology & Strategy, U.S. Cellular: “Carrier aggregation and small cells are two features of LTE Advanced that provide an immediate benefit.”

Narothum Saxena, Vice President, Advanced Technology & Strategy US Cellular

Narothum Saxena, Vice President, Advanced Technology & Strategy US Cellular

Narothum Saxena, Vice President, Advanced Technology & Strategy US Cellular, USA is taking part in a keynote panel discussion on LTE Advanced on Day One of the LTE North America conference, taking place on the 21st-22nd November 2013, in Dallas, Texas, USA. Ahead of the show he explains what the key aspects of LTE Advanced are and why the technology is so important to operators.

What are operators getting so excited about LTE-Advanced, and in particular Carrier Aggregation?

Carrier aggregation allows the operators to increase the bandwidth by aggregating different blocks and sizes of contiguous or non-contiguous spectrum which could be intra-band or inter-band. It allows for efficient management and utilisation of spectrum. For example, if a carrier has 10MHz of AWS (Band 4) and 10MHz of lower 700MHz (Band 12) spectrum they can operate two independent LTE networks, but with carrier aggregation these two different bands can be aggregated into one 20MHz downlink pipe. It’s a more effective use of spectrum that potentially increases throughput. From an operator’s perspective, this provides many benefits such as supporting higher number of users and apps of the future that demand increased bandwidth.

The LTE North America conference is taking place on the 21st-22nd November 2013, in Dallas, Texas, USA. Click here NOW to download a brochure for the event.

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Captain Kirk to get LTE, but will he be able to roam?

Courtesy of U.S. Cellular, LTE is coming to Riverside, Iowa, future birth place of James T Kirk. Phew.

This week saw more progress in the US LTE market, with the news that U.S. Cellular would be launching an LTE network in March. It’s good news, especially for the future of intergalactic space travel. By this I mean, of course, that U.S. Cellular says that it will be covering the state of Iowa with LTE, which, as we all know, is where Captain Kirk will be born in the year 2225. (Well, at least in the original series, as opposed to the alternative timeline introduced in the 2009 movie where Kirk in born is space, but raised in Iowa. OK. Um.. too geeky?Um.. what were we talking about? OK, LTE in the US. Right).

U.S. Cellular said that it would offer two devices that would operate on its network; a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet and a Samsung Galaxy Aviator 4G LTE. One issue this throws up is roaming. And not across the reaches of the galaxy either but simply across the US.

Although all US carriers operate LTE at 700MHz, they do so at different band plans and so aren’t necessarily compatible. It took a while for people to realise that you wouldn’t be able to roam between AT&T and Verizon. However, it seems that U.S. Cellular and Verizon both will use 700MHz A and B blocks, so they should theoretically be compatible as far as LTE roaming is concerned. Whether it will actually happen though, we’ll have to wait and see, but if it doesn’t happen, the attraction of LTE on U.S. Cellular could be severely curtailed for anyone that has to move outside of its footprint. It’s an issue that will become increasingly important as users get used to LTE. Once they have it at home, they’ll want it on the move – at least if they’re company is paying for the no doubt eye watering roaming charges. It’ll be worth keeping an eye on how the US solves it internally, as it could well have implications for the rest of the world too.

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