Leading telecom operator O2 has announced plans to test the Long Term Evolution technology (LTE) in Britain and the trials are expected to start around early summer of 2010.
LTE is considered as the next step of mobile broadband technology and its proponents claim that the technology can allow operators to offer their customers with maximum theoretical speeds up to 340mbps.
O2 apparently plans to test the technology in six countries including UK in the coming months and the other countries where trials are likely to be conducted include the Czech Republic, Brazil, Spain, Germany and Argentina, though O2 has not mentioned any specific dates for the trial.
According to Telefónica, the parent company of O2, the initial technology suppliers for these field tests would include the likes of Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Huawei along with NEC, Nokia Siemens Networks amongst others.
Explaining the rationale behind the trials, Julio Linares, the company's COO said that “At Telefónica we are working with the conviction that we can only offer our clients the maximum levels of quality and innovation. To do this, we are defining our strategy and the rollout of LTE with the objective of driving mobile broadband”.
Last week, US-based Verizon Wireless announced plans that it will be switching on its LTE network in the US as early as next year in one swoop rather than bit by bit.
LTE should supplant 3G in the forthcoming years as the dominating mainstream wireless technology and O2 appears to be in good position at least in the UK. However, even with an increase in the download speed of an order of magnitude, the pitfalls of wireless may still remain especially as the number of devices on wireless networks increase dramatically.
Telefonica Announces Wide-Spread Trials of LTE Networks