North America Accounts for 54% of All Global LTE Connections in Q1 2013

by Istvan Fekete on June 13, 2013

According to a report signed by 4G Americas, Canada and the US added 58 million HSPA and LTE mobile broadband connections annually during the period between January and March. This means mobile broadband accounts for 49% of all mobile connections in the two countries.

On a global scale, LTE has recorded an impressive 400% growth as of the end of the first quarter, ending the three-month period with more than 90 million connections. The most recent numbers show that this number surpassed 100 million connections as of May.

As 4G Americas points out, there are 178 commercial LTE networks stretching across 72 countries, compared to about 74 commercial LTE networks in 40 countries just 12 months ago. The success of the 4G LTE network has triggered more than 100 newly launched networks in just over a year, with the US and Canada heavily contributing to the growth of the Long Term Evolution network.

According to the latest stats, the two countries combined account for 54% of all global LTE connections.

Canada’s LTE network is set to grow at an accelerated pace. Since the beginning of the year, wireless players have been giving some LTE love to multiple regions. The “LTE year” kicked off with Telus turning the switch on to its LTE network in Thunder Bay in January, and SaskTel closely followed the incumbent with its own 4G network launch.

Next it was Telus again, who flipped the LTE switch on in Prince Edward Island, focusing on Charlottetown, followed by the Saint John, North Bay and Summerside launch, reaching more than 24 million Canadians in April.

Bell, Koodo, Virgin, and Telus again went live in Saskatchewan later that month, with the latter expanding its 4G network in Fredericton and New Brunswick in May. Meanwhile, both Rogers and MTS announced expansion of their LTE coverage.

As you can see, Canadian wireless operators are set to expand their LTE network, driven by the consumer demand for high-speed cellular network coverage.

Chris Pearson, President of 4G Americas commented, “Innovations in technology and service providers’ commitment to upgrading their networks to LTE has moved the U.S. and Canada to the current mobile broadband leadership position. However, the leadership of LTE in North America is fragile, as more spectrum allocations by governments are needed soon to alleviate the impending spectrum crunch.”

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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