The Emerging 4G Wireless Landscape in the U.S.
Operators, Chip Sets, and Consumer Electronics
|Product Type: Strategic Analysis
Date: June 2009
Author: Michael Demler
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Popularity of new smartphones such as the iPhone™ 3GS and the Palm® Pre™ has stimulated growth in consumer uptake of mobile data services. At the same time, mobile video applications such as YouTube (which is pre-installed in these devices), consume such a high volume of data that they strain the capacity of 3G networks.
To address opportunities in the growing demand for mobile access to rich digital media, wireless operators are compelled to develop roadmaps for migration to lower cost/bit, higher capacity 4th Generation (4G) networks.
This report dispels the confusion that has resulted from partisan “4G Wars” between proponents of next-generation wireless technologies. The emerging 4G landscape in the U.S. will be characterized by co-existence of mobile WiMAX and LTE technologies that are explained here in terms of the advantages that each will provide over 3G.
Operator strategies for 4G are explored, with a competitive analysis that identifies the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in each carrier’s plans.
The report includes a review of the leading chip set providers that are developing the 4G SoCs that will enable next-generation mobile internet devices.
Examples of new 4G-enabled consumer electronics are shown, from laptops with embedded transceivers to 4G handsets, MIDs and personal hotspot modems. The report is 57 pages long, including 21 illustrations and 7 tables.