LTE is fastest developing mobile system technology ever – GSA

There are now 163 commercial LTE networks, according to stats from industry vendor body, the GSA.

The latest update of the GSA Evolution to LTE report claims that 361 “firm” LTE network deployments are planned or in progress in 114 countries, including 163 networks which are commercially launched in 67 countries. (MVNOs are excluded. Multi-band networks are counted as one network.)

A further 54 operators in 10 additional countries are engaged in pre-commercial LTE technology pilot trials, tests or studies.

Taken together, it means that 415 operators in 124 countries are now investing in LTE.

The total number of LTE subscriptions reached 68.33 million in Q4 2012. That level of growth means that LTE is the fastest developing mobile system technology ever and is now mainstream, the GSA concluded.

1800 MHz is the most widely used band for LTE deployments globally and at Q4 2012 served 14.27 million subscribers

LAUNCH BREAKDOWNS BY SPECTRUM BANDS
The GSA report said that 74 operators have launched commercial LTE1800 (band 3) systems in 43 countries either as a single band system, or as part of a multi-band deployment. 1800 MHz is the most widely used band for LTE deployments globally and at Q4 2012 served 14.27 million subscribers on over 45% of commercially launched LTE networks today.

The next most widely used band for LTE deployments is 2.6 GHz (50 networks i.e. over 30% of networks in service).

15 LTE TDD systems are commercially launched (within the total of 163 commercial networks) including 6 that are deployed in combined LTE FDD and TDD operations.

The Evolution to LTE report (PDF), which covers both FDD and TDD modes, is researched and published by the Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA), and provides an update of the business drivers, objectives and targets for LTE.

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