Verizon Wireless on Wednesday said that it will continue to strategically add a second band of spectrum, known as AWS, as it looks to keep up with demand on its LTE network.
CTO Nicola Palmer said that the carrier equipped more than 10,000 cell sites with AWS capability last year and turned on the feature in more than 5,000 of the sites. The number of AWS-capable sited is likely to triple this year, Palmer said.
“We are going to go hard,” Palmer said. The company isn’t equipping all sites in a city, instead adding the capability in areas of peak demand in all of the cities where it holds AWS spectrum licenses.
The company also plans to begin routing phone calls over its LTE network this year.
As for a talked-about mobile video service, Palmer noted the company tested the capability of broadcast video over LTE this year during the Super Bowl.
“We are anxious to bring that to market,” Palmer said. “The technology works. We have some other things to work out in terms of the models.”
Palmer said Verizon also plans to be at the forefront of other so-called LTE advanced features such as carrier aggregation and heterogeneous networks, which bundle multiple types of spectrum for faster speeds.
Palmer’s comments came as Verizon Wireless had a call with journalists to tout the results of RootMetrics’ national ranking of the Top 4. U.S. carriers. Verizon finished first in five of six categories, including overall ranking and most reliable, while AT&T took the speed crown.
Verizon also led in the bulk of states in a state-by-state ranking in overall wins as well. AT&T edged out Verizon for top speed nationally, though Verizon won in some key states such as California. T-Mobile’s speed claims were born out in some cities, where the No. 4 U.S. carrier has deployed its LTE network.
“We always talk about straight As,” Palmer said. “This is basically the equivalent of straight As.”