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In the last two years or so, we have seen a rapid rise in the LTE network technology. Several networks have already pushed the boundaries and implemented the entire LTE base for their system. Also, the next generation carrier technology, 5G is reportedly under works in some countries such as Europe and the US.
Lying between the 5G and LTE is a new technology called as LTE-A (LTE Advanced). It is the upgraded version of LTE network with subtle improvements. In this article, we will take you through the latest LTE-A network technology and how it differs from the original LTE network.
What is LTE Advanced?
LTE is termed as 'Long Term Evolution,' which has taken the mobile network standard to a whole new level. As the name itself suggests, LTE-A stands for LTE Advanced, which is bound to take the LTE network technology to an all new level with faster data speeds by using carrier aggregation (CA) and multi-antenna techniques. Also, the LTE-A does improve the bandwidth of the network.
What is Carrier Aggregation?
The lone improvement to be seen under the LTE Advanced is Carrier Aggregation (CA). This CA combines up to five bandwidths, and as a result, the downloads speeds will be improved, and so does the bandwidth.
Carrier Aggregation can combine the bandwidths of 1.4, 3, 5, 10, 15 or 20MHz. At this point in time, when all the five bandwidths are combined, a maximum speed of 1Gbps can be achieved, which is insane. However, when coming to the real life scenario, the rates will be dropped to 150Mbps. Having said that, all the existing 4G LTE networks can be used as
LTE-A standard, which means that, if the users' smartphone does not support LTE-A, then they can continue enjoying the services in regular LTE.
You Need to Get a New Phone to Enjoy LTE-A
As of now, LTE-A has been deployed by some carriers around the world such as Sprint and Verizon is testing that now. So, there is no doubt that the upcoming phones of Sprint and Verizon will come with support for LTE-A.
Considering the same scenario in India, Reliance Jio, the country's LTE-only network has already started testing the LTE-A system and it may launch the services in March 2017. Notably, Reliance LYF phones come with LTE-A system, and the company is even touting the phones as ‘Next Generation Smartphones,' which is entirely understandable.
To enjoy the LTE-A service, you need to get a new phone. Also, it is said that a relatively new hardware named ‘relay node' will be embedded into the smartphone to boost the network coverage of the smartphone.
LTE-A is Different from 5G!
One of the major questions asked by our readers is, is the LTE-A, the upcoming 5G technology? Certainly, no. LTE-A network services will be rolled out in the next couple of years, and the 5G network is still a long way to go. So, the LTE Advanced is entirely different from 5G network.