Tech Titans Battle Over LTE-U that Could Wreck WiFi

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Dec 7, 2015.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    [​IMG]

    In this corner we have a small army of heavy hitters from the technology world, including Google, Microsoft, Comcast and several others. In the other corner we have Verizon and Qualcomm. Why are these tech titans threatening to tussle? It's over something called LTE in Unlicensed Spectrum (LTE-U).

    LTE-U is a new wireless standard that Verizon wants to introduce. It uses technology developed by Qualcomm. It relies on a combination of home wireless routers and newer small cell towers in order for Verizon to offer LTE data and cell phone access over the unlicensed spectrum inherently in WiFi. It basically allows the company to "skirt" the typical need to use any spectrum across the airwaves that they are required to license for billions from the US government.

    Google, Microsoft, Comcast are the three main companies lobbying the FCC to delay LTE-U’s adoption pending further tests. They point to an Oct. 23 FCC filing which they joined. It claims that LTE-U “has avoided the long-proven standards-setting process and would substantially degrade consumer Wi-Fi service across the country.” Basically, their argument is that if Verizon attempts to use LTE-U across our WiFi networks, it will disrupt those networks. This is because Big Red's central scheduling software, which tells each phone when to transmit on a particular bandwidth, will "essentially take over" and crowd out the regular WiFi signals.

    The Google, Microsoft, Comcast group claims their research has shown that it will be a disaster, while Verizon and Qualcomm claim their tests indicate it is effective and foolproof. Matt Grob, Qualcomm’s chief technology officer said, “We have a capability that we’ve proven can coexist, and we’re ready to go with it. We don’t want to wait. Our partners, they don’t want to wait.”

    Interestingly, Cisco Systems weighed in on the matter for both sides, indicating in a June filing to the FCC, "that regulator interference can lead to unnecessary delays but that companies developing technologies rarely prioritize peaceful coexistence with rival systems." ~ Bloomberg

    For now the FCC Chairman, Tom Wheeler, seems content to let the two parties duke it out without FCC involvement. In a Nov. 19th news conference in Washington DC, Wheeler said, “Folks, you’ve got to come together and resolve this in a broad-based standard."

    For more info on this controversial topic, here's the Bloomberg article: Bloomberg
     
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  2. supermandroid

    supermandroid Active Member

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    It sounds like it could work in theory, however, the fact that Verizon wants to push the matter so quickly and is receiving flak from other big players is a huge red flag.
     
  3. Jeffrey

    Jeffrey Premium Member
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    I don't have the technical savvy to say which is better, but tend to side with G and MS.
     
  4. Miller6386

    Miller6386 Developer
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    I guess I don't get it.... is this going to pull off just your own wifi when connected or any wifi signal you are near?

    Note 4tified
     
  5. Jeffrey

    Jeffrey Premium Member
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    I would think any signal..
     
  6. liftedplane

    liftedplane Gold Member

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    I think it uses certain wifi signals in routers that are designed to use it and like it said new towers. What Google and MS (and comcast of all) seem to be upset about is they feel like it's going to eat up available bandwidth in their free unlicensed zone. I'm not sure if it really would interfere that heavily. I would be interested to see some serious unbiased 3rd party testing done on this.

    I can see why verizon wants to do it. it saves them money, (not that it'll save us any money, they'll probably just increase their unlimited data price again) maybe we'll get lucky and they'll increase data caps if they get to use this spectrum, I also want a million dollars for christmas.
     
  7. Mustang02

    Mustang02 Diamond Member

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    Of course VZW wants to do this. They don't have to pay for WiFi being used from someone else's connection(Cox,Wow,ATT,etc).
     
  8. Briankbl

    Briankbl Active Member

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    Why is the URL smashed into the thread subject like that lol?
     
  9. Jeffrey

    Jeffrey Premium Member
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    Not sure. We need to check with @dgstorm
     
  10. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    It was a weird glitch of the system... it wasn't even supposed to be there, and wasn't when I first finished the story. Should be fixed now. Thanks!
     
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