LTE devices set to break through 3,000 barrier

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LTE user devices are on the cusp of breaking through the 3,000 mark, with the number of products almost doubling during the last 12 months, new figures have revealed.

The latest report from the Global mobile Suppliers Association revealed there are 2,919 devices, spanning smartphones, dongles and tablets. This is up 86.8 percent on 2014. The GSA said there were now 297 companies producing LTE devices, up 93 percent on last year.

Smartphones dominate, accounting for 54.4 percent of all device types, or 1,589 products. The report said 98.4 percent of LTE smartphones are multimode, meaning they can operate on at least one 3G technology. More than 40 percent of LTE smartphones can run on 42MBps DC-HSPA+ networks.

Elsewhere, the report found 1800MHz remains the most popular band, with 1,322 devices operating on it, a share of 45 percent.

LTE-Advanced devices have also become increasingly prominent, with 858 supporting Category 4 and a further 69 supporting Category 6. Alan Hadden, Vice President of Research, GSA, said: "LTE-Advanced compatible devices now make up almost a third of the total number of LTE devices."

There has also been growth in devices supporting LTE TDD, with 1,085 products now on the market. They account for 37.1 percent of total, compared to its 29 percent share in October 2014. The most popular bands are 38 and 40.

Last week, the GSMA said that discussions need to be speeded up on the future of 700MHz, with both operators and broadcasters vying for the spectrum.

The European Commission is set to report the findings of the Lamy Report in the coming months, which could see operators use the spectrum exclusively, or share it with operators.

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