What LTE on Your BlackBerry Will Mean

The BlackBerry Storm 3 that is in testing promises LTE (Long Term Evolution aka. 4G) technology if it is paired with the right cellular network. LTE promises us unparalleled wireless speeds from anywhere, but what will this mean for BlackBerry users? A heck of a lot.

Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) likes to mention the fact that its smartphones use very little carrier bandwidth compared to Apple’s iPhone or even Google Android OS powered devices. Okay, but that is partially because the BlackBerry web browser leaves much to be desired. Smartphone makers have to perform a tightrope walk between what users want and what carriers want. The carriers are after all what makes the phones work and subsidize the phones to get them into as many hands as possible. AT&T has been plagued by dropped calls and low internet speeds because of stressed networks never meant to support so many iPhones watching Youtube. (FaceTime anyone?) LTE technology should change all of this.

Skeptical? Consider how many fans around the world have been streaming the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa. The age of streaming video to a smartphone already arrived but 3G networks have been struggling to keep pace. LTE 4G networks will fix the problem.

Lowell McAdam, CEO of Verizon Wireless has mentioned that the company may be ready to offer five LTE handsets on its network next year around May. The Storm 3 could conceivably be the first phone to harness the LTE network. RIM has to have realized by now that users—if given the opportunity—will use up bandwidth like there is no tomorrow. While there will always be a set of users that only use their smartphone’s data plan to check email, browse the sports scores and send some instant messages back and forth, the average digital consumer’s bandwidth appetite will continue to climb. Gaining experience by making the Storm 3 LTE enabled was a very smart move on RIM’s part.

BlackBerrys in the future that harness 4G speeds (with processor and RAM specs to keep up) will simply change the smartphone experience. As cloud computing gains more of a footing every day, it will eventually be our BlackBerrys that link us to all of this information. Our phones will become less like phones and instead become more like terminals that access data from a mainframe on a continual basis. With LTE promising speeds that make traditional LAN networks look clunky, expect an entire new wave of applications and solutions that require 4G.

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