LTE 4G over the Next Few Years

By J. Gerry Purdy  |  Posted 2011-04-29 Print this article Print


LTE 4G over the next few years

Over the next two years, most of the United States and Canada will have LTE operating by AT&T, Verizon Wireless and other operators. Each of these LTE modems will be branded by the wireless operator. Sierra Wireless also works with operators around the globe as they implement LTE as well.

There will be two early segments that will utilize LTE: 1) enterprise notebook PC users who are heavy users of data and 2) those wanting to download rich media.

Verizon has just announced their first phone-the HTC Thunderbolt-that has LTE data communications built in. We can expect to see a number of additional smartphones with LTE coming in the second half of 2011. This will be followed by AT&T launching LTE late this year and through 2012. A number of smartphone manufacturers are already working on LTE smartphones, so it's safe to assume that both Verizon Wireless and AT&T will introduce a number of LTE-enabled phones in the market during the next year (most likely including the iPhone).

Within a few years, LTE will become pervasive throughout North America (Mexico, the United States and Canada). Most enterprises will be deploying LTE wireless capability for their employees' portable computers, either as embedded modems shipped with the laptop or using USB modems.

But even as 4G comes to market, heavy users of wireless data will continue to use WiFi when it's convenient (especially for rich media applications due to cost). Thus, there will always be a "balancing act" between using wireless broadband (always available, good bandwidth, higher cost) with WiFi (occasionally available, high bandwidth and lower cost).

J. Gerry Purdy, Ph.D. is Principal Analyst of Mobile & Wireless at MobileTrax LLC. As a nationally recognized industry authority, Dr. Purdy focuses on monitoring and analyzing emerging trends, technologies and market behavior in the mobile computing and wireless data communications industry in North America. Dr. Purdy is an "edge of network" analyst looking at devices, applications and services, as well as wireless connectivity to those devices. Dr. Purdy provides critical insights regarding mobile and wireless devices, wireless data communications and connection to the infrastructure that powers the data in the wireless handheld. He is author of the column Inside Mobile & Wireless that provides industry insights and is read by over 100,000 people a month.

Dr. Purdy continues to be affiliated with the venture capital industry as well. He currently is Managing Director at Yosemite Ventures. And he spent five years as a Venture Advisor for Diamondhead Ventures in Menlo Park where he identified, attracted and recommended investments in emerging companies in mobile and wireless. He has had a prior affiliation with East Peak Advisors and, subsequently, following their acquisition, with FBR Capital Markets. For more than 16 years, Dr. Purdy has been consulting, speaking, researching, networking, writing and developing state-of-the-art concepts that challenge people's mind-sets, as well as developing new ways of thinking and forecasting in the mobile computing and wireless data arenas. Often quoted, Dr. Purdy's ideas and opinions are followed closely by thought leaders in the mobile and wireless industry. He is author of three books as well.

Dr. Purdy currently is a member of the Program Advisory Board of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) which produces CES, one of the largest trade shows in the world. He is a frequent moderator at CTIA conferences and GSM Mobile World Congress. He also is a member of the Board of the Atlanta Wireless Technology Forum. Dr. Purdy has a B.S. degree in Engineering Physics from University of Tennessee, a M.S. degree in Computer Science from UCLA, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Exercise Physiology from Stanford University. He can be reached at

Disclosure Statement: From time to time, I may have a direct or indirect equity position in a company that is mentioned in this column. If that situation happens, then I'll disclose it at that time.


J. Gerry Purdy, Ph.D., is Principal Analyst of Mobile & Wireless at MobileTrax LLC.
Dr. Purdy has been covering mobile, wireless, cloud & enterprise for the past 20+ years. He writes analysis and recommendations each week in an easy-to-read manner that helps people better understand important technology issues and assist them in making better technology purchasing decisions.

Disclosure Statement: From time to time, I may have a direct or indirect equity position in a company that is mentioned in a column. If that situation happens, then IÔÇÖll disclose it at that time.

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