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Main » 2008 » December » 10 » LG Shows Off 60 Mbps Smartphone Chip
LG Shows Off 60 Mbps Smartphone Chip
9:32 AM
The company said their 4G LTE processor could power smartphones that get 60 Mbps downloads and 20 Mbps uploads.

LG Electronics revealed a modem chip Tuesday that could offer users up to eight times the connectivity speed of current smartphones.

The company showed off a chip that uses Long Term Evolution (LTE), a technology that is expected to be a main contender for the next generation of mobile broadband. LG said the LTE chip could get 60 Mbps download speed and 20 Mbps upload.

"Now that LG has developed and tested the first 4G handset modem, a commercially viable LTE handset is on the horizon," said Paik Woo-hyun, LG's chief technology officer.

The LTE technology is still being established, and it is supposed to have a 100 Mbps theoretical download speed. But the capabilities of LG's chip are still far superior to modern 3G handsets, which can get a maximum of 7.6 Mbps download speed. A handset with LG's chip and an appropriate network opens up multiple possibilities for consumers, including quick Web browsing, and the ability to stream high-definite movies on the go without any buffering.

Many of the large telecoms around the world like AT&T (NYSE: T) and Vodafone (NYSE: VOD) have backed LTE for their 4G networks, and it is steadily passing important technical milestones. While some commercial equipment may come as early as 2010, it will take a few years for LTE networks to be rolled add, which may open the door for rival WiMax.

WiMax is another 4G technology that is being backed by the likes of Google (NSDQ: GOOG), Intel (NSDQ: INTC), Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S), Samsung and various cable companies. With a 75 Mbps theoretical download limit, WiMax may not be as fast as LTE, but the technology is already being deployed by the Sprint-backed Clearwire. The lead time and the embedded chip model may give WiMax an advantage over LTE.

To help further understand the factors contributing to next-generation wireless technologies, InformationWeek has published an analysis of the 4G landscape. Download the report here (registration required).

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