T-Mobile USA’s chief technology officer Neville Ray said Tuesday that T-Mobile won’t be late to the game when it launches its 4G LTE network in 2013, despite launching the network two years after its competitors. “As we roll out LTE in 2013, we have the advantage of coming to market at a time when the price points on LTE devices and network infrastructure will be coming down and the performance of LTE devices and network infrastructure will be improving,” Neville explained. “We plan to deploy LTE release 10 compatible equipment, so we’ll be well-positioned and ready to move to LTE Advanced.”
Ray said the company hasn’t completely ruled out deploying an HSPA+ 84 network, either. “The evolution of HSPA+ is still an opportunity for us and offering HSPA+ 84 (84Mbps theoretical download speeds) is something we’ll continue to evaluate because the capability is there in the network,” Neville explained. “That said, our priority now is preparing our network for LTE in 2013. But, in the long run, I would like to see both technologies advance.”
Ray also said on Tuesday that T-Mobile USA is expanding its “4G” HSPA+ network to 8 new markets, including Abilene, Amarillo, Odessa, and Victoria, Tex; Bakersfield, CA; Eau Claire, Wis.; Joplin and St. Joseph, MO. T-Mobile’s “4G” network shouldn’t be confused with AT&T or Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE networks, however, which offer far superior data speeds. That said, T-Mobile’s HSPA+ covers 200 million people across 225 different markets.