As is the hot thing for a mobile provider to be doing these days, US Cellular has its sights on getting itself an LTE network. About a month ago, the carrier revealed just where it would initially launch LTE service, offering coverage in six states sometime during the first quarter of next year. We’ve made a few attempts at learning what devices will kick-off LTE availability, and a recent FCC filing made by US Cellular offers a couple additional clues.
We saw a slide a few weeks back that showed-off four unnamed LTE devices, including a smartphone, tablet, hotspot, and USB modem. The tablet looked like a Galaxy Tab, and the phone like a Galaxy Nexus, but there was no indication that these were anything more than generic placeholder images. In this new filing, though, US Cellular reveals only two devices set to arrive when the network launches: a smartphone and a tablet, both made by the same manufacturer.
Way back in September we found some evidence that US Cellular was testing the Samsung SCH-R930 on its in-development LTE network. When we combine everything we’ve heard with this new information, it’s looking increasingly likely that we actually will see a pair of Samsung devices be US Cellular’s debut LTE hardware.
There’s one more interesting bit in the carrier’s FCC paperwork, where it shows interest in the idea of nationwide LTE roaming on the 700MHz bands. It would likely be a long time before we saw anything come of that, but its something that could end up having a big effect on the future of 4G deployment.