A group of telecom technology manufacturers and network operators are developing a standard that could boost mobile speeds to 100Mbps, making current 3G connectivity at 1.8Mbps seems positively snail-like.
Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Nokia, Nokia Siemens Networks, Nortel, Orange and its parent company France Telecom, T-Mobile and Vodafone are to collaborate on promoting the next-generation of high performance mobile broadband networks based on 3GPP Release 8 â€œLong Term Evolution / System Architecture Evolutionâ€ (LTE/SAE) specifications.
The alliance, which will be known as the LTE/SAE (Systems Architecture Initiative) Trial Initiative, will arrange field tests, interoperability experiments and customer trials to promote the 3G variant.
The initiative will start work this month and the project is expected to take up to 24 months to complete.
LTE is expected to provide lower operating costs for operators and lower latency end-user services, providing a service which outperforms both 3GPP Release 6 HSPA, and current fixed line DSL data rates
LTE radio systems provide greater radio spectrum efficiency through new radio transmission schemes and advanced multi-antenna technologies, and a more flexible utilisation of radio spectrum through support of carrier bandwidths ranging from 1.25 MHz to 20 MHz (subject to 3GPP ratification).
LTE networks could start to be rolled out from 2009 to 2010 and could cost operators $18bn.