The largest US cellular operator by subscribers, Verizon Wireless, has named Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent as equipment suppliers for its planned long-term evolution (LTE) network rollout. Verizon’s chief technology officer Dick Lynch made the eagerly awaited announcement at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The cellco’s advanced mobile service, which will operate in the 700MHz band, is due to be launched to between 25 and 30 US markets next year. Average data download speeds on the new network are expected to reach 8Mbps, though lab tests have seen peak rates hit 80Mbps, Lynch said. Nokia Siemens Networks and Starent Networks were both awarded contracts for minor sections of the overall LTE rollout.
Lynch said: ‘Verizon Wireless’ LTE network deployment will be driven by our vision of providing ubiquitous global wireless broadband connectivity and mobility. LTE enables us to continue to meet business customer demands for a higher bandwidth, low latency service that works broadly in the United States and globally, while helping us to meet consumer demand for mobilising the many applications they frequently use when tethered to high bandwidth wired networks.’