Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mobile Done This Decade

For those of you who don't realize, or even care, the next decade is going to be HUGE in the mobile arena. Mobile phones have been out for several decades now but this decade is going to be something different. With hardware becoming cheaper and more and more powerful, smart phones have become one of the hottest items. Last decade really started it with phones from companies like BlackBerry and Apple but with the latest generation of smart phone you can see where this is going.

What we're looking at is a mobile internet connection that rivals your home internet connection. Currently, the 4 big mobile providers have mobile phones with a wireless network that destroy any dial-up connection and compare to most DSL providers' base internet services speeds. Typical cable internet speeds are around 7 Megabits per second on the download and around 500 kilobits per second on the upload but many providers have home connections as high as 20 Mbps down; although Verizon FiOS offers a connection at 50 Mbps down. Many companies' top plans are around 13 Mbps. Currently, AT&T's 3G wireless network runs around 1 Mpbs down.

But what makes this decade exciting is the 4G networks going up. Provided the Mayans are wrong, by 2013 several providers are expected to be running 4G networks; some of which will be using Long Term Evolution. LTE has a theoretical download speed that is twice the Verizon FiOS download speed at 100 Mbps. One company, Northstream, has been testing its LTE network and routinely ends with 25 Mbps. If you remember those numbers from before, that is almost twice as fast as the average cable companies' top tier.

The reason I feel this is exciting is the connection speeds that will be offered by the wireless companies will be able to match landline connections. I, however, expect the landline providers to feel pressured by this and should expect to see increases or plans comparable to a future wireless plan.

Expect good things!

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