MetroPCS goes for LTE 4G technology

MetroPCS has chosen LTE technology to run their eventual 4G network, according to RCR Wireless News. They’ll join the ranks of fellow CDMA carriers Verizon and Alltel in the evolution. AT&T, a GSM carrier, has also announced its intentions to go with LTE. Both they and Verizon will use the spectrum they acquired in the 700 MHz auction to get the ball rolling with the upgrade. The strange part about all this is that CDMA technology has a 4G option of its own: UMB. So why are these CDMA carriers migrating to a GSM-based technology? It could be for a number of reasons. Foremost, it appears that LTE is simply a superior technology. I can’t confirm that, but it’s what I’ve heard from people I know and respect. Second, perhaps the CDMA carriers have realized the trouble which comes along with having a different technology than the rest of the world. Many people currently consider CDMA superior to GSM. However, since most of the world runs on GSM, most of the handsets are made for that technology. Getting on a GSM technology means that they’ll be able to offer a wider variety of phones. Roger Lindqust, president and CEO of Metro, explains his company’s reasoning:

“Quite frankly, 4G represents a great opportunity for us because we see that as capacity expansion, higher data rates imply capacity expansion, not just combining speed and download capability,” Lindquist said according to a transcript of the call from “So I think overall, we see it as kind of wait and see. And if market trends shift and change, then that’s something that will be easily accessible to us.” “I think the world is going there, the world phone will be a reality,” Lindquist said. “I think you’ll see some interesting developments here over the next six to twelve months.”
What will also be interesting to see is how Metro makes this transition. It’s not like they have extra spectrum lying around, a la Verizon and AT&T.]]>

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