Verizon: LTE will be saturated in some areas by next year

Verizon is telling the FCC that its LTE network will be strained to meet demand in some areas as early as next year.

Image credit: Verizon Wireless

Image credit: Verizon Wireless

It is always advisable to take some claims by telcos with a grain of salt, but in a filing to the FCC to win approval for its purchase of wireless spectrum, Verizon states it will run out of LTE spectrum in some areas as early as 2013. This would be followed by a widespread shortage of spectrum to meet customer's needs by 2015, if the $3.6 billion purchase of spectrum from a partnership of Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks does not move forward.

The major carriers in the U. S. are always moving to capture sufficient wireless spectrum to keep up with demand, and as LTE continues to roll out nationwide that demand is growing fast. LTE is very early in its life in this country but if Verizon is playing it straight we may see congested networks far sooner than expected.

The spectrum crunch is particularly interesting as Apple is expected to announce LTE connectivity for the next generation iPad to be announced this week. AT&T customers remember only too well the 3G network problems that followed the release of the original iPhone on that carrier's stretched network. A top selling iPad with LTE could stretch those networks to the limit if things are as bad spectrum-wise as Verizon is telling the FCC.