LTE vs. WiMax, The Great Wireless Debate

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For those who haven’t been following the debate of LTE vs WiMax network upgrades we are here to fill you in on what is going on in the latest of wireless networks.

LTE :

This stands for Long Term Evolution and it is a network upgrade (and albeit a big one!).

Verizon has proposed theoretical speeds that could be up to 75Mbps down and 20Mbps up based on multiple sources. If speeds like these can be achieved, it would allow for broader development in areas such as HD Media Streaming and Data Intensive apps. So far this sounds great and it would require a new phone along with it, as current CDMA phones do not support LTE network protocols. Currently, Verizon and AT&T have confirmed LTE roll-outs (AT&T by 2011 and Verizon by end of Q4 2010). Moreover, Verizon confirmed this as of September 16th 2010, so we should expect LTE as part of Verizon’s network soon.

Why should I care?

For the average consumer you would see improvements such as less calls being dropped and faster download speeds over the air. The greater the speeds on the network, the more improvements in development and the more devices we will be able to see.

WiMax:

Is an acronym for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access and is another candidate for many carrier’s future plans involving a network overhaul.

WiMax has the capabilities of providing portable network access across great areas such as the size of a city, and aside from mobile opportunities, it showcases features that would appeal to ISP’s such as an alternative to DSL and Broadband. WiMax is also cheaper than connections with comparable speeds such as fiber because of the cheaper implementation costs. Currently, WiMax networks do exist and are used for mobile broadband solutions in laptop wireless cards and similarly equipped devices.

Why should I care?

You would see such benefits as lower bills because of the cheaper implementation costs, and better coverage in cities due to WiMax’s large broadcasting capabilities.

If you would like to read more on this topic check out this thread by XDA member Geniusdog254, which discusses some of the benefits of LTE and WiMax.

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