As more countries start to deliver 4G internet networks, there still is no standardised platform
Demands for mobile broadband connections are increasing rapidly, as consumers become ever more desperate to be online whenever and wherever they are. Added to this demand is the advancement of the devices that use the networks. The next generation of mobile broadband, dubbed 4G, is intended to provide this extra speed and capacity.
However, take up of 4G has been slow. According to a recently published report by the Wireless Intelligence group, 87 percent of all 4G networks are based in the US, Japan and South Korea. The US leads the way, with 47 percent of the global total, with 12.7m people connecting to the networks this year.
Elsewhere, 4G has struggled to get off the ground. Just six percent of all connections to 4G are in Europe, while the UK has yet to even launch a 4G network, as legal battles between operators has prevented the government from launching the auction for the bandwidths until mid-2013.
Apple’s new iPad was trumpeted as the first mainstream tablet to offer 4G speeds. However, Apple was forced to remove advertising claims of 4G network speeds outside of the US because the LTE chip in the iPad only worked with US LTE networks. The US firm was even fined $2.2m in Australia for misleading advertising.
Finding a standard system is vital if the capacity needs are to be met. It’s likely that pressure from device manufacturers will lead to a standard system as they look to keep down design costs. However, governments must come together to settle on a platform that will allow consumers to remain online all over the world.