September 11, 2012: GSA (Global mobile Suppliers Association) has published an update to its Evolution to LTE report which confirms 347 telecoms operators in 104 countries are committed to commercial LTE network deployments or are engaged in trials, technology testing or studies. The report covers LTE FDD and LTE TDD technologies.
292 operators have made firm commitments to deploy commercial LTE networks in 93 countries. The number of operators committed to LTE network deployments has increased by 23% in the past year. A further 55 operators in 11 more countries are in a pre-commitment stage, engaged for example in LTE technology trials, tests or studies.
96 operators have launched commercial LTE services in 46 countries. This figure includes 11 commercial LTE TDD systems which are launched in Australia, Brazil, India, Japan, Oman, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sweden and the UK.
68 operators have launched commercial LTE services in the past 12 mon ths.
GSA forecasts there will be 152 commercial LTE networks operating in 65 countries by December 31, 2012.
LTE commercial network launches per year:
2009 = 2 networks launched
2010 = 15 networks launched (year-end cumulative total = 17)
2011 = 30 networks launched (year-end cumulative total = 47)
2012 to September 11th = 49 networks launched (total to date = 96)
GSA end 2012 outlook = raised again, to 152 networks in 65 countries
GSA re-affirms LTE as the fastest developing mobile system technology ever.
Deployments of LTE in re-farmed spectrum continue to accelerate, emphasizing the flexibility and growing importance of 1800 MHz as a prime band for mobile broadband services delivery. LTE1800 (LTE in 1800 MHz spectrum) is now launched on one third of all commercial LTE networks. Thirty-two operators, compared to five one year ago, have commercially launched LTE1800 either as a single band system, or as part of a multi-band deployment strategy. Commercial LTE1800 services are now available in 24 countries: Angola, Australia, Azerbaijan, Croatia, Czech Repulic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Mauritius, Namibia, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovenia, South Korea, and UAE. (My list of LTE1800 operators see here).
The report also includes for the first time a status update of operator commitments to HD voice enabled by VoLTE and W-AMR codec technology, confirming numerous deployments and commercial launches.