It’s been a week since International CES in Las Vegas, Nevada. I was taking a look back on what the “WOW factor” was for me, and the Ascend Mate 2 4G from Huawei stood out.
Samsung has been the biggest name in the Android device arena when it comes to smartphones, especially when it comes to bigger displays. Huawei has designed a device that can easily compete with Samsung’s Note series and give them a run for their money.
When first getting my hands on the Ascend Mate 2 4G, I was automatically drawn in by the display. Usually a bigger screen doesn’t do much for me, but a 6.1” display will grab your attention, especially since I’m an iPhone 5S (4” display) user. When playing around with the handset and talking with the Huawei rep, the first feature she pointed out was the 4050 mAh battery that gives you up to 60 hours of battery life. A power user can go up to 12 hours of display with data access. This is perfect for the majority of us who live on our smartphone. Not to mention you’re even able to charge another device right from smartphone as well. Perfect for topping off Bluetooth accessories, etc. Read more
T-Mobile is gearing up to flip the switch on their LTE network. Today they began pushing out software updates for Android version 4.1.2/ Software T889UVBMB4 for the Samsung Galaxy Note II. The new update introduces LTE support along with other improvements for the device.
Joining the Galaxy Note II on T-Mobile’s 4G / LTE will be the BlackBerry Z10. In testing the LTE network Laptop Magazine is showing download speeds of 58.8 Mbps and uploads at 25.5 Mbps. Keep in mind those numbers are from a tower not under any type of load so probably wont be real world numbers when LTE goes live.
The software update will take place OTA (Over The Air) and if you want to read more about the update you can follow this link.
LTE will go live first in Las Vegas, NV and Kansas City. The plan is to cover 100 million people by mid 2013 and 200 million by years end.
AT&T has expanded their 4G LTE market in four new metro areas bringing their total to 113 markets, covering 160 million people. AT&T’s goal is to reach 300 million on their 4G LTE network by the end of 2014 and the company is already more than half way there.
The new markets include:
- Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Nashua, New Hampshire
- Birmingham, Alabama
- Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
Sprint has announced another expansion of their 4G/ LTE network to 11 new markets. This brings Sprint’s total 4G/ LTE markets to 43.
“We are pleased to deliver our new 4G LTE network to more Sprint customers,” said Bob Azzi, senior vice president-Network, Sprint. “Whether someone uses 4G LTE for personal or professional needs, they will find that Sprint’s new 4G LTE network is performing extremely well. Customers should find it consistent, reliable and fast.”
The new areas:
Clarke County, Virginia/ Jefferson Country, West Virginia
Harrisburg, Maryland/ Martinsburg, West Virginia
Shenandoah Country, Virginia
South Bend/ Mishawaka, Indiana
T-Mobile has been working hard to strengthen their 4G experience in some of the major metro areas throughout the US, today the company has announced that they have enhanced coverage in 10 new metro areas. These upgrades allow unlocked iPhones to take full advantage of 4G network speeds and is another step in T-Mobile bringing the iPhone to market in 2013.
The 10 additional areas include:
- Miami, Florida
- Phoenix, Arizona
- San Francisco, California
- Mesa, Arizona
- Tucson, Arizona
- Modesto, California
- Oakland, California
- San Jose, California,
- Stockton, California
- Fort Lauderdale, Florida
With the addition of the 10 new cities, this brings a total of 15 metro areas live. The other five areas are Baltimore, Houston, Kansas City, Las Vegas and Washington D.C. T-Mobile is expecting to launch multiple additional major metro areas by the end of the year.
Verizon Wireless is expanding its LTE network once again keeping it at the head of the pack of other 4G LTE wireless providers.Verizon is currently avaliable to more than 250 million people throughout the United States.
Verizon is expanding their network in order to better serve their customers in the Southern California area. The expansion will cover customers in the cities of Ventura, Ojai, Santa Paula, Fillmore, and the Oak View area. Also the neighborhoods of Stevenson Ranch, Saugus, Newhall, Valencia, Canyon Country, Victorville, Hesperia, Adelanto, and the town of Apple Valley.
Verizon’s 4G LTE network will be avaliable in these areas Thursday November 15th.
Tomorrow Verizon Wireless will launch their 400th 4G / LTE market in Marquette, Michigan. Excited about the 400th market the company will be hosting a series of celebrations for customers across the country.
Customers who show up for the celebration in Marquette will have a chance to win a 4G/ LTE enabled device by participating in a scavenger hunt. Customers’ will also be join by Verizon Wireless representatives and community leaders to turn on the 4G / LTE switch.
Other cities taking place in this celebration for Verizon Wireless are listened below.
- Gadsden, Alabama
- Albany, Georgia
- Vidalia, Georgia
- Vincennes, Indiana
- Owensboro, Kentucky
- Monroe, Michigan
- Hattiesburg, Mississippi
- Columbia, Missouri
- North Platte, Nebraska
- Jamestown, New York
- Walla Walla, Washington
- Jackson, Michigan
- Norfolk, Nebraska
Follow this link for exact addresses and times for these celebrations.
Sprint has announced four new devices that will be joining their 4G LTE line-up. Those devices are the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1), LG Optimus G, the LG Mach and the Sprint Plug-in-Connect Tri-Mode USB. Below are pictures and specifications of the new devices making their way to Sprint. We are waiting on pricing and availability.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1):
- 10.1 inch display
- Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
- 1.5 GHz dual-core processor (Qualcomm MSM8960 chipset)
- 3 megapixel rear camera with LED flash
- VGA front-facing camera
- 1 GB RAM
- 8 GB of ROM
- 7,000 mAh Lithium-Ion battery
LG Optimus G:
- 4.7 inch WXGA display (1280 x 768 pixels)
- Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
- 1.5 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor
- 13 megapixel rear camera with advanced features
- 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera
- 2 GB RAM
- 32 GB of ROM
- 2,100 mAh Lithium-Ion battery (up to 13 hours talk time)
- 4 inch WVGA display
- Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
- 1.2 GHz dual-core processor
- 5 megapixel rear camera with flash
- 0.3 megapixel front-facing camera
- 1 GB RAM
- 8 GB of ROM
- 1700 mAh Lithium-Ion battery (up to 9 hours 30 minutes talk time)
Sprint Plug-in-Connect Tri-Mode USB:
- Easily supports transition between Sprint 3G CDMA plus 4G LTE and WiMAX networks
- Backwards compatible to the EVDO Rev. A & 0 and 1xRTT Networks
- Fold-away USB Connector
- LED Service Status Indicator
- Connection Manager application stored directly on the USB eliminating the need to have Connection Manager software on all computers/devices that will be using the device
- Supports Hands-Free Activation via OMA-DM
- Auto-Connect capable / Auto NDIS
- Supports datalink via over the air OMA configuration (LTE dependent on network development)
- Support Over-The-Air updates firmware/PRL updates
- GPS-Enabled for Sprint Location Based Services
We just had the pleasure of meeting Nicola Palmer, Chief Technology Officer for Verizon Wireless. The press conference we attended was about the the current state and future plans for Verizon’s 4G LTE network.
I will break down some points and post the video later today when Verizon makes it available.
Verizon made the push for LTE 2 years ago with a goal of having the network active in 400 markets by the end of 2012. Right now Verizon LTE covers over 75% of the population. Verizon is going to exceed their original goal on October 18th when a total of 410 markets will be live on LTE, two and a half months prior to their self imposed December 31, 2012 deadline.
In addition to having 410 LTE markets live on October 18th, Verizon stated they are committed to entirely covering their existing 3G footprint with LTE by the end of 2013. While this sounds like a long time Verizon has been aggressively rolling out the network at a rate faster than any other carrier.
At the end of September 2012, 35% of all data traffic handled by Verizon Wireless was on its LTE network. They expect 50% of network traffic to be carried on the LTE network in just a few more months. This goes a long way in showing Verizon’s dedication to LTE and the 37 current devices they offer that support LTE. It took 8 years for Verizon to get 3G to the 50% adoption rate, LTE only took 2 years.
Like every mobile network you can’t rest when a technology is “fully” deployed. Verizon has already begun testing voice over LTE which will provide a high definition voice experience. In addition deployment and testing of LTE Advanced has begun and should start rolling out to towers in the 700 MHz spectrum mid to late 2013.
What does all this mean to a Verizon Wireless customer or potential customer? It means Verizon has a solid foundation for their network and is already getting a jump on competition by deploying the best as fast as possible. Data speeds and communication reliability have always been the focus of Verizon and they have proven they can deliver with the LTE network. The 6 billion dollars spent on Verizon’s network infrastructure annually, is money well invested.
Not only can Verizon claim to have the nations largest 4G LTE network, they can also easily claim the worlds largest 4G LTE network. We will have more info on the network and their 400th market celebration leading up to October 18.
Are you a Verizon LTE customer? What do you think of the network?
Starting September 16th Sprint will have the affordable Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE. The Android powered device comes equipped with some high-end specifications all for $100.
The Galaxy Victory comes with a 4-inch display, 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich), 5 megapixel rear camera with LED flash, video capture, 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera, Google wallet, and Sprint ID.
The Galaxy Victory will cost $99.99 after a $50 mail-in-rebate and a new two-year agreement with Sprint. Follow this link to be taken to Sprint’s website to learn more.