ENGLAND: An update to the ‘Status of the LTE Ecosystem’ report just released by GSA (Global mobile Suppliers Association) confirms that 87 manufacturers have announced 666 LTE-enabled user devices, including frequency and carrier variants.
Alan Hadden, president of the GSA, said: “Around 400 new LTE user devices were announced in the past year, and in this time the number of manufacturers grew by 52 percent. Smartphones are now the largest LTE device category.”
The GSA report was released on January 31, 2013 and examined devices that can operate on the FDD and/or TDD modes of the LTE system, tracking manufacturer names and models, form factors, operating frequencies, and fallback technologies that are also supported as customers move outside LTE coverage areas (i.e. to access HSPA, HSPA+, DC-HSPA+, EV-DO, or TD-SCDMA systems).
The 450 LTE devices can also operate on HSPA networks, including 201 products that incorporate 42 Mbps DC-HSPA+ capabilities. A total of 193 devices can operate on EV-DO systems.
A total of 221 LTE smartphones, including operator and frequency variants were confirmed, representing 360 percent year-on-year growth to become the largest LTE user device category. LTE is supported in the most popular smartphones from all leading brands. The number of LTE-enabled tablets almost tripled during the past year.
2 PC cards
Total = 666 user devices (January 31, 2013).
Note that some products are carrier or country specific and are not available in all markets.
Regarding frequency band support, the report findings for the main LTE bands are as follows (several products support more than one band):
700 MHz (bands 12, 13, 14, 17): 284 devices
800 MHz (band 20): 137 devices
1800 MHz (band 3): 153 devices
2600 MHz (Band 7): 180 devices
800/1800/2600 MHz triband: 112 devices
2100 MHz (band 1): 107 devices
AWS (Band 4) 147 devices.
Most LTE user devices operate in the 700 MHz band. however this is a broad definition encompassing 4 sub-bands and most of these devices operate in only one of those bands.
Band 7 (2.6 GHz) has the highest support with the greatest number of compatible devices, followed by 1800 MHz (band 3) i.e. LTE1800. The number of LTE1800 devices more than tripled in the past year. GSA recently confirmed that 1800 MHz is the dominant band for LTE network deployments in virtually all regions of the world, and is used by 40% of all commercially launched LTE networks currently.
A user with a triband 800, 1800 and 2600 MHz LTE FDD device could potentially use it in 55 countries, i.e. in more than 80% of countries where LTE service is commercially available today (subject to inter-carrier roaming agreements).
124 devices can operate in the TDD mode of the LTE standard. Bands 38 (2.6 GHz) And 40 (2.3 GHz) have the largest ecosystems of user devices. Support for bands 41, 33, 42 and 43 is growing.