1800MHz band fuels LTE growth: GSA confirms 331 commercially launched LTE networks, including 150 LTE1800 deployments
September 17, 2014: 331 operators have commercially launched LTE networks and service in 112 countries, according to data released today by GSA (Global mobile Suppliers Association) in the latest update of the Evolution to LTE report.
65 LTE networks have launched so far this year.
The total number of commercial LTE networks is expected to exceed 350 by end 2014.
The most widely used spectrum for LTE network deployments continues to be 1800 MHz (3GPP band 3). 150 LTE1800 networks are commercially launched in 71 countries. 1800 MHz is used in 45.3% of LTE network deployments, and its share continues to grow. LTE1800 also has the largest user devices ecosystem. Over 40% of user devices (smartphones, MiFis, dongles, CPEs, etc.) can operate in the 1800 MHz band.
The next most popular contiguous band for LTE deployments is 2.6 GHz (band 7) and is used in 26% of networks. 800 MHz (band 20) has gained share as the next most popular contiguous spectrum band and is by far the most popular sub 1 GHz coverage choice for LTE.
Alan Hadden, President of GSA, said: “We have seen a significant uptake in deployments of VoLTE-enabled HD voice service and LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation systems, and these are the major industry trends worldwide. The LTE Broadcast feature is also gaining industry traction with trials and studies progressing in all regions”.
40 LTE TDD networks are commercially launched in 27 countries, meaning that approaching 1 in 8 commercially launched LTE networks incorporates the TDD mode (also known as TD-LTE). 27 operators have launched LTE service using only the TDD mode, and 13 operators have deployed both TDD and FDD modes together in their networks. The vast majority of the LTE standard is identical for both FDD and TDD modes. Each mode has similar performance and benefits equivalently from economies of scale and evolution of the LTE standard.
More key facts from the Evolution to LTE report:
71 operators in 36 countries i.e. over 21% of operators are investing in VoLTE deployments, studies or trials, with 10 operators having launched HD voice service using VoLTE. Several more launches are imminent
21 operators have launched LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation in 14 countries. 79 operators in total, i.e. almost 1 in 4, have launched or are deploying or trialling LTE-Advanced technologies in their networks
7 operators have commercially launched LTE services using APT700 (700 MHz) spectrum, all of them using the internationally harmonized FDD band plan configuration known as 3GPP band 28. APT700 is a key coverage band for LTE with near-global market potential. 33 APT700 (band 28) user devices comprising smartphones, tablets, CPEs and MiFi hotspots have been launched in the market by 11 manufacturers
19 operators are trialling or deploying LTE Broadcast technology enabled by eMBMS to efficiently deliver multimedia content one-to-many, especially video. Last month GSA launched a new LTE Broadcast (LTE Multicast) market status report to track this fast developing segment
280.4 million LTE subscriptions globally by Q2 2014, according to Ovum. The balance of regional shares is shifting. Europe quadrupled its share of LTE subscriptions to 14.9% by Q2 2014 compared to a year earlier (3.7%). 156.4 millions LTE subscriptions were gained worldwide over the past 12 months, representing 126% annual growth.
The Evolution to LTE report (September 17, 2014) is exclusively researched and published by GSA and available for registered site users to download via the link on http://www.gsacom.com
Numerous charts, maps etc. confirming the progress of mobile broadband developments including LTE and HSPA are available on the website home page and http://www.gsacom.com/news/statistics
Registration page for new users: http://www.gsacom.com/user/register
GSA (Global mobile Suppliers Association) represents GSM/EDGE, WCDMA-HSPA and LTE suppliers, providing reports, facts, analysis and information explaining market developments and trends. Through its website www.gsacom.com GSA supports a global community which includes over 64,600 registered users, complemented by over 21,300 followers and members using GSA social network channels. Around 250,000 reports, information papers and other materials are downloaded from the GSA site annually
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