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4G handset to be demonstrated this month

The Japanese operator NTT DoCoMo will show off a working prototype of an LTE handset in Barcelona in February, phone maker NEC has revealed
Written by Matthew Broersma, Contributor on

NTT DoCoMo is to demonstrate a prototype handset based on the high-speed wireless data technology LTE later this month, according to the Japanese mobile operator's handset partner, NEC.

NEC said on Monday that NTT will demonstrate the handset receiving streaming high-resolution video across an LTE network at Mobile World Congress, which kicks off on 15 February in Barcelona. According to NEC, the handset uses an LTE chipset that was developed by Fujitsu, NEC, NTT DoCoMo and Panasonic, and first sampled in October.

LTE, the 'long-term evolution of 3G', is the successor to HSDPA and is roughly 10 times faster, providing theoretical downlink speeds of at least 100Mbps and a theoretical uplink of at least 50Mbps. The technology was designed to reduce latency in data transmission and improve the efficiency of frequency usage, making it more suitable than 3G for services such as streaming HD video, video conferencing and online gaming.

The world's first commercial LTE mobile broadband services went live in Oslo and Stockholm in December through the Scandinavian operator TeliaSonera, which is initially offering LTE access via a mobile dongle.

Huawei announced in December that it had completed its first UK-based LTE trials, held in conjunction with O2, that reached maximum downlink throughput of 150Mbps. The trial took place in the Slough area, where O2's headquarters are located.

NTT has said it plans to spend between ¥300bn-¥400bn (£2bn-£3bn) on LTE rollouts over the next five years.

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