Tag Archives: 4G

FCC unlocks 3.5GHz CBRS band, enables OnGo in Apple and Android phones

Spectrum in the 3.5GHz band has been selected across the world as ideal for next-generation cellular services, thanks to its combination of reasonably long-distance range and solid chunks of available bandwidth. Within the “low,” “mid,” and “high band” ranges of radio frequencies, 3.5GHz is mid-band spectrum and is already being used for 5G in China, Europe, and South Korea, while the U.S. has focused until now on low and high band 5G frequencies. – Jeremy Horwitz, VentureBeat » https://ift.tt/2tUqUSY

FCC tries to bury finding that Verizon and T-Mobile exaggerated 4G coverage

Verizon, T-Mobile, and US Cellular exaggerated their 4G coverage in official filings to the Federal Communications Commission, an FCC investigation found. But FCC officials confirmed that Chairman Ajit Pai does not plan to punish the three carriers in any way. Instead, the FCC intends to issue an enforcement advisory to the broader industry, reminding carriers “of the penalties associated with filings that violate federal law.” – Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica » https://trib.al/kGPa56A

Qualcomm promises gigabit LTE speeds with its new Snapdragon X16 modem

Most recent LTE speed increases have come via carrier aggregation, which essentially combines multiple chunks of spectrum across multiple antennas to improve bandwidth. Most of today’s high-end phones use two or three chunks of 20MHz spectrum to achieve download speeds of up to 300 or 450Mbps, respectively. The Snapdragon X12 achieves its 600Mbps speeds by using three chunks of 20MHz spectrum plus a higher 256-QAM rather than 64-QAM, increasing the amount of data that can be transmitted over the same link from 75Mbps to 100Mbps (albeit at the cost of higher interference). The X16 uses a combination of technologies to hit its 1Gbps theoretical peak. – Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica

US LTE Speeds Rank a Dire 55th Fastest in the World

According to an updated report from Open Signal, the US ranks 55th in the world league table for LTE speeds. Its paltry average of 10Mbps places it just below Russia and above Argentina in the listing. That is, however, up three places compared to last year. […] The US does do one thing well, though, and that’s coverage, where it ranks 7th in the world, providing LTE to 81 percent of those who try and connect. – Jamie Condliffe, Gizmodo

FCC Allows Further Testing of LTE Service in Unlicensed Spectrum Used by Wi-Fi

The FCC on Friday approved further testing of the approach, known as LTE-U (U for unlicensed), which has been at the center of a struggle between tech heavyweights. For months now, Verizon, Qualcomm and others have been pushing LTE-U, promising that it would allow for more efficient data use by cellular devices while also insisting that it can be a good neighbor with Wi-Fi devices. – Ina FriedIna Fried, Re/code

AT&T brings back unlimited data plans, but there’s a big catch

photo: BGR

AT&T is bringing back unlimited wireless data as a carrot to lure in customers to subscribe to DirecTV or AT&T U-Verse. […] Of course, like with most carrier plans, this plan raises questions about just what a carrier means when it says you have “unlimited” data. AT&T will throttle your speeds during hours of network congestion if you’ve exceeded 22GB per month, so heavy users shouldn’t expect to have 4G connectivity at all times. – Brad Reed, BGR

EFF: T-Mobile’s Binge On is throttling video streaming speeds

Binge On

photo: T-Mobile

Today, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) also went after T-Mobile and Binge On. The organization confirms that T-Mobile is lowering the data speed of all HTML5 video streamed by its customers, not just those available with Binge On. EFF ran a series of tests using the same phone, during the same time of day, and made sure that there was a good 4G LTE connection at all times. Each test was run twice, one using an HTTP connection which allowed T-Mobile’s network to recognize the video content and optimize it. The other test was dome using an HTTPS connection which prevented the network from optimizing the stream. – Alan F., PhoneArena

YouTube has a beef with T-Mobile over its video streaming policy

According to the statement, YouTube is particularly irked that T-Mobile customers on the Binge On plan aren’t able to watch HD versions of YouTube videos. Instead, they get a 480p version. YouTube cites two issues – T-Mobile customers get poor quality YouTube videos and the data counts toward their bandwidth limits. Second, it claims T-Mobile enrolls its customers in Binge On without asking them first. – Mark Huffman, Consumer Affairs

Lawsuit alleges Apple knowingly concealed an iPhone Wi-Fi defect

photo: BGR

“According to [Hagens Berman]’s investigation, the defect causes consumers to automatically switch from their Wi-Fi signals to using more costly cellular data when streaming videos or engaging in other activities that use large amounts of data,” the press release reads. “Because of the automatic switch from Wi-Fi to cellular data, consumers were using huge amounts of cellular data without any warning.” The law firm says that the issue was fixed only in iOS 8.1, released in October 2014, but Apple knew about it almost immediately, yet failed to fix it for years. The suit also alleges that Apple hasn’t even disclosed the defect to its subscribers. Moreover, Apple is believed to having fixed a similar issue for Verizon iPhone 5 handsets, but not those on AT&T. – Chris Smith, BGR

AT&T, Comcast and T-Mobile questioned over streaming freebies

photo: CNET

In a research note published Thursday, equities analyst Paul Gallant of Guggenheim Partners called the FCC’s move “an unusually proactive step,” since no complaint has been filed. He believes the FCC is warning wireless and broadband providers to not get aggressive with these zero-rating services, especially while the appeals court decides whether its Net neutrality rules are legal. – Marguerite Reardon, CNET
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