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4G services: Are we there yet?

There is a fierce marketing campaign in the USA over which carrier is going to provide the "real 4G " services. Technicalities regarding the "4G " label aside, users will witness substantial improvement in services.

Where 4G services are concerned, the USA ‘s experience has been far from what was expected. “4G ” has just become a marketing term and those who really understand what it is are not happy about the development at all. Major wireless carriers in the USA are calling their networks 4G, which these networks are certainly not.

This problem did not occur when the industry was making the transition from 2G to 3G because the criteria of such services were clearly defined by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). This is the first time, however, that major US carriers are using their own marketing terms to sell mobile broadband services which are faster but not yet 4G.

These networks still don’t offer 100 Mbps download speeds on mobiles and 1 Gbps on landline broadband connections, as 4G networks are supposed to as per the ITU. The defence of these companies is also not without basis as they named their services before the term 4G was defined by ITU. The confusion increased when ITU released a press release saying it was fine for these companies to call their services 4G.

One thing is for sure, the networks being employed by Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T are a substantial improvement over current technologies being offered to mobile broadband customers. For users the new networks may mean they will be able to download a full feature film within five minutes and will also be able to move from one wireless service zone to another without interruption in services.

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