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ITU Rules That WiMax, LTE Don't Qualify As 4G

timothy posted about 4 years ago | from the ok-roll-camera-but-say-3g-plus dept.

Wireless Networking 137

GMGruman writes "It's official: All those ads and vendor claims about 4G services being offered today or being right around the corner are fiction. The international standards body ITU has ruled that Clearwire's WiMax network and the LTE systems that Verizon and others are just starting to roll out are not in fact 4G services. Oops."

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HOLY SHIT! HOLY HOLY SHIT! NO! NO NO NO! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995668)

HOLY SHIT! I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS! Some marketing drones who don't understand the technologies they're pushing have made a mistake and mislabeled them while attempting to make them sound better than they are. THIS CANNOT BE!

Help- I Burned My Girlfriends Cooter (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995706)

ok this is what happening,

my parents are out with family friends, and theyll be back any minute so i need your help

see, i volunteer on my sister's softball team (im 22 the girls are 15)

and whatever, i met this girl, her name is Alison, and were going out for a while. We have a lot in common, and sometimes i help her with homework. i helped her with her english essay and she still got a D... this is because her teacher is a prick... anywayz

so she came over like an hour ago, and i really want to lose my virginity, so i ask her to have sex

"no no i cant, its not right" she said, but i told her "dont worry, i know what im doing, ill be done in like 10 seconds, plus ill give you 2 n64 games if you say yes."

So then I gave her Diddy Kong Racing and Ken Griffy Jr. Baseball and we went up to my room. she is a bit confused and scared.

then i think to myself- yo i need lube, right? cuz i heard other people saying you need to lube up her clit otherwise it wont fit in properly.

ok so i have no lube, but i really want to lose my virginity, so i grab some butter from the fridge, but its cold and it wont melt, so i microwaved it for 8 minutes and i put it in a glass and poured it on her cooter, and now shes saying i burned it.

i dont know what to do, my parents are going to be back any minute and shes crying in the bathroom plz help you guys are really smart please help me.

any idea how to shut her up? should i give her another n64 game?

More than 3 and not as much as 4? (2, Funny)

martyb (196687) | about 4 years ago | (#33995778)

Some marketing drones who don't understand the technologies they're pushing have made a mistake and mislabeled them while attempting to make them sound better than they are.

I'm sure they could come up with some new advertising slogan... Lessee there was the old standard, 3G, and we're so much better than THAT. But, we cannot say we meet the new standard, 4G. What we need is something that's better than 3... I've got it!

Get your piece of the Pi! 3.14159G

<grin>

Ya, it'll never work; just Pi in the sky.

Re:More than 3 and not as much as 4? (0, Offtopic)

sempir (1916194) | about 4 years ago | (#33995936)

I am SO disappointed in the American advertising Industry. What's with this Bandwidth pissing contest!!! When is the market leading "ORCHESTRAWIDTH" product gonna hit the market? Wake the fuck up people!

Re:More than 3 and not as much as 4? (1)

NoSleepDemon (1521253) | about 4 years ago | (#33996472)

You were SO close to getting it. Pi G. PiG. PIG. Yes, this makes sense, and aptly describes the people trying to push it on you.

Re:More than 3 and not as much as 4? (1)

skozsert (1714328) | about 4 years ago | (#33997304)

Wireless service especially for the police?

Re:More than 3 and not as much as 4? (1)

Gerald (9696) | about 4 years ago | (#33997580)

Wireless service especially for the police?

Already been done. [cisco.com]

Re:More than 3 and not as much as 4? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 4 years ago | (#33999526)

3.999... G

Who cares ? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995674)

The last mile problem isn't the bottleneck , limited data plans , limited data rates , and limited bandwidth due to over-congested areas are the main problem.
Mobile service providers want to sell you expensive "minutes" , offering good data plans would turn them into ordinary Internet providers and everybody would be swinging sip phones and talking they're mouth off for 20$ a month.

Re:Who cares ? (2, Informative)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33995744)

You know, new generation of tech is specifically meant to address the "limited data rates , and limited bandwidth due to over-congested areas" stuff; at least in theory.

Re:Who cares ? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995824)

I was using limited as in artificially limited. Most providers won't give you what the current technology provides. They will QOS it on the backbone like it's nobody's business .
As for the over-congested areas , they could de-congest those by adding more base stations with narrower angle antennas.But they won't. The only reason they'd rather shovel money into this tech rather than more of the old is because this way they can get more profit from either phone sales or the usual 2 year contract they come with.
And after they do that , the areas will still be congested same as they have been with 3.5G and 3G and gprs/edge before those.

Re:Who cares ? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 4 years ago | (#33996000)

Rust belt tech milked until past its fall apart stage while propaganda soothes your mind and next gen stuck on bling makes you smile.
That new phone starting to feel a bit like a Trabant in your pocket?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4xZgxDffac [youtube.com]

Re:Who cares ? (1)

hedwards (940851) | about 4 years ago | (#33996324)

Indeed, in Seattle, AT&T appears to have a dozen or so towers, all of them are way up north or way south, with none actually in the city limits as far as I can tell. Whereas T-Mobile seems to have a half dozen in my neighborhood alone.

While distance wise, 5 miles or so isn't too bad, trying to cram that many phones onto the same towers definitely isn't the way to decent reliability.

Re:Who cares ? (1)

mikkelm (1000451) | about 4 years ago | (#33996424)

"and limited bandwidth due to over-congested areas are the main problem"

Wait, how is that not a last mile problem, and how is that not a bottleneck?

Insert more coins to continue (1, Troll)

Evro (18923) | about 4 years ago | (#33995678)

They'll just pour more money into marketing/lobbying whatever the ITU is until they change their mind. When does a multibillion-dollar corporation not get what they want?

Re:Insert more coins to continue (3, Informative)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 4 years ago | (#33995974)

. . . whatever the ITU is . . .

The ITU http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Telecommunication_Union [wikipedia.org] is pretty damn important. They define all sorts of worldwide standards for the telecommunication industry.

If you visit Geneva, take a walk by their headquarters.

Re:Insert more coins to continue (4, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 4 years ago | (#33996028)

Not sure that it matters. When oil companies started marketing Type II Natural oil as "synthetic" the trade/standards committee called foul. So the oil companies went to court, found a judge to declare "if the oil acts like synthetic, even though it's natural, it can be marketed as 'synthetic' on the bottle." Now you can't be sure if your oil is a True Type IV synthetic built in a lab, or natural oil from the ground.

So the cellular companies will just find some compliant US judge to declare their service is "as fast as G4" and can be marketed as 'G4' on the label, without violating false advertising laws. Done deal.

Re:Insert more coins to continue (1)

Low Ranked Craig (1327799) | about 4 years ago | (#33996380)

If they start marketing G4 I think they might get sued by Apple even though it's been replaced by Intel chips.

Re:Insert more coins to continue (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 4 years ago | (#33997454)

Except the 4G standard doesn't necessarily define what speed you'll get. It defines a latency and target speeds. Even worse, there is absolutely no guarantee of interoperability between 4G products. The reality is that the consumers probably won't a difference between 3G and 4G. At least not in the current implementations of WiMax or LTE. What they will notice is better bandwidth, which being 4G compliant doesn't guarantee anymore than using Ca6 cable guarantees better bandwidth over a Cat5 cable*.

*An interesting reference, btw. Cable manufacturers were selling Cat6 cable before the standard was ratified,

Re:Insert more coins to continue (1)

horza (87255) | about 4 years ago | (#33997884)

Really? I thought the ITU had become increasingly irrelevant over the past couple of decades. With ETSI controlling mobile standards, and IETF regulating Internet standards (with W3C specifically for web), what exactly to the ITU do any more? I read the Wikipedia page and it sounds as toothless as the UN itself.

Phillip.

Re:Insert more coins to continue (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33998830)

On the plus side it might mean that the "more money into marketing/lobbying" of grandparent is even more irrelevant, thanks to E part of ETSI? (and even more thanks to F...)

Re:Insert more coins to continue (1)

imroy (755) | about 4 years ago | (#33996656)

When does a multibillion-dollar corporation not get what they want?

When the standards body is headquartered in Europe?

And they did the same thing with 3G (0, Troll)

Golbez81 (1582163) | about 4 years ago | (#33995682)

Telcos are like used car salesmen

Re:And they did the same thing with 3G (2, Informative)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33995776)

Actually, no. The other way around.

ITU includes EDGE in "3G" - but no carrier does it AFAIK, despite current revisions of EDGE being close to the speed of first "real" 3G/UMTS; and future revisions surpassing it noticeably.

At least with currently available infrastructure of LTE, there should be decently straightforward upgrade path to LTE Advanced (the "true 4G" apparently...). Maybe they're fed up mainly with WiMax, which does seem more like a quick marketing gimmick.

Re:And they did the same thing with 3G (1)

Golbez81 (1582163) | about 4 years ago | (#33999466)

So... you're saying the ITU are used car salesmen? Please explain. If the telcos are lying about having 4G currently deployed, which you so obviously pointed out just like the article, how is that not lying to the customer like used car salesmen?

HOGWASH !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995700)

Rangers Rule !!

Eat that China !! You suck !!

What's in a name ? (5, Funny)

justleavealonemmmkay (1207142) | about 4 years ago | (#33995712)

Personnally, I'll wait for mobiles that go to 11G

Re:What's in a name ? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996744)

ironically, 11G (base2) == 3G(base10).

I just saw an ad on Hulu advertising Sprint 4G (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995722)

So given that the ad aired after the announcement, does that mean that I can sue for false advertising or something? I figure, hey, if I'm in the US and have to deal with all of the crazy lawsuits out there, I might as well get my own piece of the action, eh? :-)

-- Qubit

Re:I just saw an ad on Hulu advertising Sprint 4G (2, Insightful)

biryokumaru (822262) | about 4 years ago | (#33995840)

No, like you said, you're in the US. You can only win a lawsuit here if you're a multi-billion dollar corporation. Sorry.

Re:I just saw an ad on Hulu advertising Sprint 4G (1)

Totenglocke (1291680) | about 4 years ago | (#33998888)

So the idiot who poured coffee in her lap was a multi-billion dollar corporation? Funny, I always thought she was someone found on "people of wal-mart".

Re:I just saw an ad on Hulu advertising Sprint 4G (1)

Surt (22457) | about 4 years ago | (#33996608)

No. The ITU doesn't hold any legal standing to set advertising standards in the US, except by direct contract with member companies. It is possible the ITU could sue for breach of contract, but no one has standing for a false advertising claim.

Re:I just saw an ad on Hulu advertising Sprint 4G (1)

Nethead (1563) | about 4 years ago | (#33997140)

And as a side note: One thing that differentiates Clearwire/Sprint WiMax is that it is a 100% IPv4 network. From the user device to the net. The whole network from the tower to data center is Layer 2 Ethernet. Clearwire is not a telco, it is truly an ISP.

LTE-Advanced standards qualify for 4G (3, Informative)

sick_soul (794596) | about 4 years ago | (#33995752)

LTE-Advanced did qualify for 4G,

http://www.3gpp.org/ITU-R-Confers-IMT-Advanced-4G [3gpp.org]

but it's just a set of standards for now afaik, that still need to be implemented.

4G = 100Mbps (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995758)

Clearwire's WiMax and Verizon's LTE networks operate between 3-12Mbps.

Boys better stop advertising 4G...

Re:4G = 100Mbps (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 4 years ago | (#33997496)

Clearwire's WiMax and Verizon's LTE networks operate between 3-12Mbps.

Boys better stop advertising 4G...

4G 100 Mbps.

Read the standard, or even read the article which mentions this. 100 Mbps is a target speed. That's like claiming its not ADSL because your wiring distance holds you to 1meg negotiated rates.

HSPA+ (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995788)

Poor T-Mobiles HSPA+ network is even less qualified than the others. Oh well, T-Mo is cheap!

Re:HSPA+ (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995928)

Actually it is MORE qualified at ~21Mbps, but still not the 100Mbps needed for 4G

Re:HSPA+ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996002)

I've tested the download speed using Speakeasy's test on my G2 phone and seen speeds as high as 6 Mbps, which is comparable to what my friends can get on their phones with wimax.

Lawsuit? (1)

Monoman (8745) | about 4 years ago | (#33995792)

How long until a class action lawsuit is filed on behalf of the Sprint customers that bought Evo and Epic phones?

Re:Lawsuit? (2, Insightful)

Da_Reapa (1683318) | about 4 years ago | (#33995838)

Maybe the phones themselves are 4G compatible, but the service isn't there for the phones.

Re:Lawsuit? (2, Insightful)

l3v1 (787564) | about 4 years ago | (#33995918)

Actually they might have a case here, since at Sprint you can find stuff all over about 4G Wireless Broadband Network and 4G Coverage and Speeds and First and Only Wireless 4G which clearly they can't provide, since their speeds seem a bit far from 4G standard specs.

Re:Lawsuit? (1)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | about 4 years ago | (#33996610)

Not only that, but they charge you an extra "4G" fee. You are required to pay for the 4G service on top of the 3G service in order to activate the phone.

Re:Lawsuit? (1)

seinman (463076) | about 4 years ago | (#33997238)

And? I don't see why so many people complain about that. DSL/Cable users pay higher fees for faster data than dialup. Fiber users pay higher fees for faster data than DSL/Cable. Why shouldn't 4G users pay higher fees for faster data than 3G?

Re:Lawsuit? (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 4 years ago | (#33997506)

And? I don't see why so many people complain about that. DSL/Cable users pay higher fees for faster data than dialup. Fiber users pay higher fees for faster data than DSL/Cable. Why shouldn't 4G users pay higher fees for faster data than 3G?

Because the 4G service they provide isn't actually any faster?

Re:Lawsuit? (1)

halltk1983 (855209) | about 4 years ago | (#33998964)

Because they're not getting 4G?

Re:Lawsuit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995968)

All this talk about lawsuits is nonsense. In the US you can advertise anything as anything as long as the -US- government hasn't established rules about it. Call a hamburger 100% beef - it had better be beef (even if it's the worst shit-ass beef in the world). Call your cell service 4G? I could call two tin cans and a length of string 4G if I wanted. You sue me? Oh, I wasn't talking about -that- 4G you sap.

Re:Lawsuit? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 4 years ago | (#33997190)

If you sign a contract based on the other party providing false information, then yes, you have potential grounds for a lawsuit.

Re:Lawsuit? (2, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 4 years ago | (#33996062)

>>>class action lawsuit

It didn't work the last time Sprint advertised a "3G" phone, sold it to customers, and then when they rolled-out their network, the phone did not work (incompatible). Doubtful a lawsuit would succeed this time either.

First large-scale LTE in the world? (4, Informative)

ckret (321556) | about 4 years ago | (#33995848)

The ITU's current technical definition in no way affects our plans to launch the world's first large-scale LTE network later this year.

Ahem... Stockholm and Oslo already did that while back. I do think they are part of what you call "the world".

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (2, Funny)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 4 years ago | (#33995962)

That's where the Large-Scale comes in. Compared to the land area of the US (i.e. Verizon's planned roll-out), they're what we would call "test markets."

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (3, Insightful)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33996152)

What Verizon calls "large scale" is just the Houston area initially [vzw.com] , with other major metropolitan areas and large airports following. You didn't really thought it will be a rapid rollout throughout most of the land area of the US, right? (BTW, Sweden and Norway have significantly lower population density)

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 4 years ago | (#33996596)

Don't tell that to VZW marketing - they're claiming "4G" will be "network wide" soon. Though, just at 4G is now a bit of an exaggeration, is suspect soon is also valid only for very large values of soon.

(FWIW, I'm an ATT customer; Verizon coverage sucks everywhere except population centers. It happens to suck slightly less than ATT in those marginal areas, but in my area not enough to make a difference)

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (2, Funny)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 4 years ago | (#33996106)

>>>"...to launch the world's* first large-scale LTE network later this year."
>>>
>>>Ahem... Stockholm and Oslo already did that while back.

You missed the footnote: * (where "world" is defined as any territory equal or larger than the US). So that would exclude all the EU Member States/Cities. See how dishonest corporations are?

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (1)

cliffjumper222 (229876) | about 4 years ago | (#33997426)

Note the words "large-scale". Stockholm and Oslo are two cities. Verizon was referring to a continent.

Re:First large-scale LTE in the world? (1)

/dev/trash (182850) | about 4 years ago | (#33998986)

yeah but they're Socialist havens. Only capitalist countries like Japan and the US count.

Well, AT&T will be happy about this (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 4 years ago | (#33995932)

After the whole "map" debacle, this should make them feel a bit better, regardless of how fast their service really is.

Seems like 4G to me (0)

pablo_max (626328) | about 4 years ago | (#33995952)

Maybe the ITU does not know what 4G means? I assumed to mean 4th generation tech.
1 was Analog
2 was GSM
2.5 was GPRS/EGPRS
3 was UMTS
3.5 was HSUPA+
4 is LTE

Certainly seems to be a 4th generation tech to me.

Re:Seems like 4G to me (1)

jonbryce (703250) | about 4 years ago | (#33995980)

2.75 was EDGE, so I guess LTE would be 3.75 or thereabouts. Maybe 3.9 if speeds are close.

And you do? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996050)

I guess that ITU - the organization that defines what constitutes as 4G and what doesn't - does know what 4G means. And apparently, they think that LTE is just not big enough leap that it could be compared to the difference between GSM and UMTS, for example.

It is kinda like Web 3.0. A marketing term we hear every now and then when yet another company tries to claim that they've reinvented the web... But the difference is never comparable to that between 1.0 and 2.0 (the transition from company websites to social media and user generated content) so we haven't started calling any such technologies/services/concepts as Web 3.0... Even if they have been new.

Re:And you do? (1)

pablo_max (626328) | about 4 years ago | (#33996772)

Have you seen a freakin LTE pulse train??
It's nothing at like UMTS. Fuck, you need a new kind of analyzer just to properly view it.

You're missing the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33997738)

I am nothing like my sister. Yet, we both belong to the same generation.

It is not about whether it is different or similar. It is about how advanced it is. ITU obviously doesn't consider LTE to be big enough step that it could be called a whole new generation. It has advantages over UMTS, but the advantages aren't that revolutionary. It is nothing like the jump from analog to GSM (I don't think I need to explain why this was a massive leap), it is nothing like the jump from GMS to GPRS (bringing internet access to mobile devices), it is nothing like the jump from GPRS to UMTS or EDGE (Broadband on mobile devices)... It is slightly improved version of what we've already seen in 3G.

So... ITU says that it shouldn't be marketed as a whole new generation of technology, because that would fool the people to consider it somehow more revolutionary when all they will see will be slightly improved speeds... You apparently disagree there. Fine: That's your opinion, no reason to argue it more. But I'm with ITU here.

Re:Seems like 4G to me (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 4 years ago | (#33996138)

1 was Analog
2 was GSM
2.5 was GPRS/EGPRS
3 was UMTS
3.5 was HSUPA+
4 is LTE

Completely arbitrary. See the recent slashdot article about how companies kept redefining what "3G" meant. First it was GPRS. Then it was EGPRS. Then it was UMTS. They change definitions whenever the hell they feel like it.

Aside - I have an old phone called Ericsson DH668 which I think is analog only.
Is this any good, or should I toss it?

With an aloe strip (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995964)

Fuck this, we're going to 5G.

Duh... (4, Interesting)

Ecuador (740021) | about 4 years ago | (#33995966)

It seems kind of obvious, reading that Verizon's LTE can give 5 - 12Mbit and WiMax 3 - 6Mbit, doesn't it? How can they advertise that as 4G when my current 3G network (Cosmote in Greece) offers HSPA+ at up to 21Mbit and while I don't have an HSPA+ device to test that, I do get the 3-7Mbit that my HSDPA device promises. Now that I look at the specs, my N900 at 10/2 capability should be even faster than my 7.2Mbit usb modem, perhaps I should benchmark it to make sure and throw away the modem...

Re:Duh... (1)

noidentity (188756) | about 4 years ago | (#33996198)

I thought the G simply referret to generation. A later generation isn't necessarily faster or better, just a design based on an earlier generation. Good example: Web 2.0.

Re:Duh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996268)

There is no "web 2.0". There is just yet even more slow ass javascript...

Re:Duh... (2, Interesting)

mini me (132455) | about 4 years ago | (#33996918)

Web 2.0 is actually a bad example as it accomplished a completely different goal than Web 1.0. Web 1.0 was human consumable content. Formats like HTML that described what is a heading, and what is a paragraph, but not what was contained within that heading or paragraph.

Web 2.0 brought formats based on XML, JSON, etc. which describe what the content is. What is a title, what is a price, etc. This allows computers to use the content in new ways that was only previously accomplishable using ugly scraping methods.

Some people incorrectly believed that Javascript was Web 2.0. That happened because websites started using Web 2.0 content via Javascript (AJAX) to enhance the website experience.

It is true that Web 2.0 is based on HTTP as Web 1.0 is, but after that, the goals are completely different.

Re:Duh... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 4 years ago | (#33997234)

Yes, Web 2.0 is all about taking protocols never designed for rigorous persistence and bending, twisting and warping them to make them work in a fashion that they were never designed for, rather than developing a protocol more appropriate for the client-server model.

Re:Duh... (1)

Jonavin (71006) | about 4 years ago | (#33996360)

Even 12Mbps doesn't sound super fast to me. In Canada we've had real world speeds higher than this from most carriers since the start of 2010. Even on our newest budget network (WIND Mobile) I've gotten real world speeds of 7Mbps on my N900.

T-Mobile has even recently been started calling HSPA+ (21Mbps) as 4G. Well why not, if you think "up to 12Mbps" is 4G.

Our major carriers will be rolling out 42Mbps+ (not sure what real world speeds will be) HSPA soon, and they are still calling it 3G. It's only marketing in the US that pushes the definition beyond ITU standards.

I just find it funny that what US carriers call 4G is actually slow than most 3G networks around the world.

Re:Duh... (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 4 years ago | (#33996934)

The US cellphone network sucks in case you did not notice. One reason is that they have historically preferred longer range over high peak bandwidth. The less communication towers you have the cheaper your network is. They also have rather weak coverage. There is no government mandate for carriers to provide decent coverage. They usually are the first to hop on a new standard, which may get quickly obsoleted, become a niche which only exists in the US (Hello CDMA!). But hey, they have "4G".

Re:Duh... (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | about 4 years ago | (#33997254)

CDMA is in fairly widespread use throughout much of Asia. Some of the carriers are planning moves to other technologies, but the same thing is happening in the US as the CDMA carriers are moving to LTE.

Re:Duh... (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 4 years ago | (#33997612)

The US cellphone network sucks in case you did not notice. One reason is that they have historically preferred longer range over high peak bandwidth. The less communication towers you have the cheaper your network is. They also have rather weak coverage.

Exactly. The US is more spreadout and longer range is the only way to cheaply get good coverage. Other countries with higher average population densities don't have this issue.

There is no government mandate for carriers to provide decent coverage. They usually are the first to hop on a new standard, which may get quickly obsoleted, become a niche which only exists in the US (Hello CDMA!). But hey, they have "4G".

You're correct the US govt doesn't mandate wireless connectivity like they do analog phone service. The broadband initiative may provide some driving force for wireless internet access though.

Re:Duh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996684)

I have no idea how they are getting these numbers for their LTE networks, they must have very little frequency space alloted for their LTE radio at Verizon.
The first LTE network launched by Telia in Sweden in December last year achieved 40 Mbit downstream / 5 Mbit upstream initially according to independent observers, and that has only improved since last year as the technology matures.

I guess it could mean that Verizon are starting out with a very small frequency space (low speeds) initially for LTE and then retire old frequencyspace used for other technologies later to bump up the speeds for LTE as the market grows?

Re:Duh... (2, Insightful)

Solandri (704621) | about 4 years ago | (#33997052)

It's mincing words. All those speeds are a lot higher than what passes for broadband in most of the U.S.

Re:Duh... (1)

Nethead (1563) | about 4 years ago | (#33997098)

I've seen, with my own eyes and testing, 28Mb/s on Clearwire. Granted that was an uncapped testing account on an empty system, but still, it did it.

Re:Duh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33998116)

Here in the MN Twin Cities I'm seeing daily 8mb to 10mb down and 1.1mb to 1.5mb up to the Germantown, WI server using the Oogla Speed Test app from the android market with 1 and 2 bars 4G on my Evo. I can get a solid 12mb down when I at the Burnsville mall near one of Clearwire's 4G towers. When they were in the initial open uncapped testing phase in August, I had an 85mb down and 25mb up connection.

In fact I'm writing this on my laptop at my father in law's place in St Paul using the hotspot on my Evo currently connected to Clearwire's 4G. Whether the ITU deems this true 4G or not, I couldn't really give a shit, all I know is that its plenty fast for my needs and works well. Working as advirtised.

Re:Duh... (2, Insightful)

Ecuador (740021) | about 4 years ago | (#33999204)

Still, 21Mbit which is deployed in many countries and called 3G is close. In fact, at least a couple of countries have deployed HSPA+ at 28Mbit and the technology has a theoretical max of 56Mbit. And it is always called 3G or at most 3.5G. You can't go calling something 4G unless it is much faster as 3G was to 2G.

4G in Australia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33995970)

Great news!
Vivid Wireless have a WiMax network in Perth, Western Australia. The ad campaign has been proclaiming^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H shoving it in everyones face "4G this and 4G that." 'bout time the ITU has come out with statement. Standards exist for a reason, and we can't have just anybody (whether they own a shonky commercial TV network or not) claim they support something to lure in consumers....and lets face it, consumers are dumb shits anyways

Do they just pull these names out of... ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996110)

Based on that group's decision, to really be selling 4G, carriers will have to get going with one of two future technologies, called LTE-Advanced and WirelessMAN-Advanced. The latter, also known as IEEE 802.16m, will form the basis of WiMax Release 2.

(emphasis mine)

Wait, so is there also a WirelessMANN, or is there just an Advanced Wireless Man? Oops, sorry, MANN.

What do they call the next generation of the networking? WirelessIronMANN?

-- Qubit

Re:Do they just pull these names out of... ? (1)

Tacvek (948259) | about 4 years ago | (#33996590)

LAN = Local Area Network
Most common technology: IEEE 802.3 A.K.A. Ethernet

MAN=Metropolitan Area Network
A Network that covers a city, or significant portion of a city, or geographical area equivalent in size to a city. (There are also smaller network sizes, including Campus area networks, etc, but they always use either LAN or MAN technologies, so are irrelevant). There was an IEEE 802.6 standard here, but it never caught on. Common technologies here ate ATM, SONET, and increasingly Ethernet and MPLS.

WAN= Wide Area Network
The definitions here vary. Some definitions have this include only things larger than a MAN, but others include anything larger than a LAN.

WLAN = Wireless LAN = Wireless Local Area Network
The most common technology here is IEEE 802.11 A.K.A wireless Ethernet, A.K.A Wifi

WMAN = Wireless MAN = Wireless Metropolitan Area Network.
One such Technology is IEEE 802.16 A.K.A. WirelessMAN (Note: no space) A.K.A. WiMax

Marketing ... (3, Insightful)

LordKaT (619540) | about 4 years ago | (#33996344)

Marketing claims to have a number. Engineers say otherwise.

Scott Adams finds more material to write about.

Re:Marketing ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33997756)

Still wondering how this is not false advertising. Isn't 4G, how can you advertise it as such, or is the reader implying it simply having 4G in the image, yet mentioning nothing of 4G services....

Devil's in the details, but shouldn't be allowed anyways. We went through all this crap w/ 3G, 2.5G, etc... over the past few years. I guess we should just come to expect that what is being offered by cell companies is complete and utter bullshiat and until set standards are in place, its all heresay.

If Apple tells me it's 4G, then it's 4G (0)

cullenfluffyjennings (138377) | about 4 years ago | (#33996566)

Why would I care what the ITU thinks 4G is. 4G is whatever the market says it is and the ITU is spectacularly disconnected from the marker.

Re:If Apple tells me it's 4G, then it's 4G (1)

sjames (1099) | about 4 years ago | (#33998346)

Because if you read abgout what 4G is actually defined to be by the ITU and then buy a device and 2 year contract because it's "4G",. you will be awfully disappointed. Before we became the Corporate States of America, we used to call that fraud.

What do you bet If I go around selling "gold" or buying stuff with "dollars" I get prosecuted?

Damn my clear router seems slower now (1)

grapeape (137008) | about 4 years ago | (#33996588)

Well not really...but I can say that its still much faster than the AT&T 3g dataplan I had. The average consumer doesn't know what 3g or 4g means anyway...they would be better off calling it something else but for joe average the only thing they really know is 3g has been a term pushed down their throats and its slow...anything else just sounds faster. While i'd love to have 100Mbps truthfully I get better speeds from my wimax connection now than I do from my cable connection at home much of the time so I really dont have much to complain about.

Broadband vs. Narrowband (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33996594)

I seem to remember several years back that engineers got on the marketers for selling DSL as "broadband" when truly cable is broadband and DSL is narrowband. This never stopped the marketers and now most people just assume broadband means anything faster than dial-up.

Re:Broadband vs. Narrowband (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 4 years ago | (#33997632)

I seem to remember several years back that engineers got on the marketers for selling DSL as "broadband" when truly cable is broadband and DSL is narrowband. This never stopped the marketers and now most people just assume broadband means anything faster than dial-up.

Because Broadband became synonymous with "better than dialup" speeds. Technically DSL is broadband as it uses a wide range of frequencies on the wire. So does a dialup modem. Ethernet and single-wavelength fiber transmission would be narrowband.

Re:Broadband vs. Narrowband (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33998630)

AIUI, "broadband" in a telecomm context means it uses a _wider_ range of frequencies than the ~3kHz used for analog voice transmission. Since a dialup modem communicates within the voice channel, it's clearly not broadband.

The Great Thing About Standards . . . (3, Funny)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | about 4 years ago | (#33996792)

. . . is there are so many to choose from. If I were running on of these money machines, I would call my data service 100G. I would say "we are so many Gs above the rest that your messages will get there BEFORE you send them." That is called puffing and is perfectly legal. I would advertise hot babes and sexy guys 100Ging all over the place, telling the world that 100Ging is like sexting but feels like real sex. I would leave the ITU, IETF, and IEEE to my standards body representatives, who like to travel all over the world, stay at nice hotels, eat at fine restaurants, sightsee, and get our latest patents turned into the next set of standards.

Re:The Great Thing About Standards . . . (1)

Grapplebeam (1892878) | about 4 years ago | (#33999540)

Actually in PUFFERY (not puffing) I don't think you can make the claim "your messages will get there before you send them". Advertising is all bullshit, but it has to be specifically unprovable bullshit, because I can prove your messages will never get there before you send them.

Another round of "draft N"-type compliance .... (1)

mr_death (106532) | about 4 years ago | (#33996956)

... and the marketeers are going to have a field day.

False advertising (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 4 years ago | (#33997150)

"For WiMax operator Clearwire, the 4G label denotes an advancement beyond 3G networks, Clearwire spokesman Mike DiGioia said. "

Right ... and when I advertise my penis as being 12 inches long on various dating sites, what I really mean is that it is bigger than six inches.

4G services? (2, Insightful)

butlerm (3112) | about 4 years ago | (#33997448)

The international standards body ITU has ruled that Clearwire's WiMax network and the LTE systems that Verizon and others are just starting to roll out are not in fact 4G services.

Are not "in fact" 4G services? Unless the ITU has some sort of trademark on "4G", that is a ridiculous claim. Ultimately the marketplace will decide what is 4G and what isn't, and at this point it looks like the ITU is up for more ridicule than Sprint / Clearwire.

I understand that LTE is significantly different from its predecessors, which gives it as good a reason as any to claim to be "4G". Is "LTE-Advanced" so different from "LTE" to rationally claim that it should be "4G" and "LTE" not be?

Re:4G services? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33997842)

Unless the ITU has some sort of trademark on "4G", that is a ridiculous claim. Ultimately the marketplace will decide what is 4G and what isn't, and at this point it looks like the ITU is up for more ridicule than Sprint / Clearwire.

I understand that LTE is significantly different from its predecessors, which gives it as good a reason as any to claim to be "4G".

I recall in 2009, when we started implementing the Release 8 nodes and protocols in the products that those operators actually *use* ... at first we tried not to call it "4G", but dammit, there was no better name! "3.5G" was already used for HSPA, and "LTE" was mostly a radio access term ...

For a while we said "4G" and made the " " sign in the air, but eventually someone broke down and announced he would simply say 4G in the future. And then we all did (internally, but probably not in published material).

Re:4G services? (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 4 years ago | (#33999346)

Oh, ITU is only the body defining what is 3G, 4G, etc. ...

Re:4G services? (1)

butlerm (3112) | about 4 years ago | (#33999532)

I thought they were defining what "IMT-2000" and "IMT-Advanced" are. The ITU doesn't have anything formally to do with what "3G" and "4G" are, nor does anyone else. What is particularly ridiculous about this is that IMT-2000 and IMT-Advanced aren't really standards at all, but rather standards for standards.

No one in this right mind is going to care which technicality keeps a real standard from being classified as IMT-Advanced, because it has absolutely no bearing on anything in the real world. It is just a bunch of overpaid bureaucrats making up things to do.

In latin america... (1)

williamyf (227051) | about 4 years ago | (#33997490)

... we will take any generation, except 5G

LTE-advanced and WirelessMAN-Advanced (1)

demiurg (108464) | about 4 years ago | (#33997512)

No news here. LTE was never meant to be a 4G service. LTE-advanced was, as well as the next generation of WiMAX, now called WirelessMAN-Advanced, both of which did make it into IMT-advanced and will be official 4G networks.

Oh great, 100Mb/s (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 years ago | (#33997792)

LTE-advanced sounds great - now we'll be able to hit our data plan caps in SECONDS!

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