Long-Term Evolution (LTE) is one step closer to industry-wide stability. 3GPP LTE technology (LTE is the name given to a project within the Third Generation Partnership Project) offers wireless broadband speeds with downloads around 100 Mbps and uploads of 50 Mbps. Seven telecommunication companies have reached an agreement on a framework for licensing intellectual-property rights that relate to LTE. This agreement will make the transition to LTE easier because the fear of lawsuits will be reduced.
Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, NEC, NextWave Wireless, Nokia Siemens Networks and Sony Ericsson have agreed to an industry standard being called FRAND, which stands for Fair, Reasonable And Non-Discriminatory licensing terms. Notebook computers that use LTE will pay a combined maximum royalty in the single digits. Handsets will pay a single-digit royalty that is based on a percentage of the sales price of the device.
Ericsson Senior Vice President and CTO Hakan Eriksson said this agreement will “reassure operators of the early widespread adoption of LET technology throughout the consumer electronics industry.”
Industry giant Qualcomm has yet to sign onto the FRAND framework. Other companies like Verizon Wireless, China Mobile, Vodafone and NTT DoCoMo are working on their own versions of LTE.
The future may not be here yet but it could be by next year. Wireless high-speed access will go a long way to promoting services like high-resolution video streaming and innovative online games that can be accessed almost anywhere at any time.