My 3G is Faster Than Your 4G

Later tonight we’ll get to see the new Sprint HTC EVO 4G phone, which would be the first one in the States that’s capable of connecting to Sprint’s 4G WIMAX network. Everyone is all a buzz about 4G networks since they promise faster broadband wireless speeds and all that. But what’s the real deal with WiMAX? First of all, the current specification tops out at 40 Mbps, but in order to get anywhere close to that speed, you have to be really close to the tower. According to Wikipedia however, you’re likely to get even 1-4Mbps at the edge of the tower radius.

What about HSPA+ or Evolved High-Speed Packet Access, like the network T-Mobile USA has already rolled out in a few cities? That technology is a progression of 3G HSPA. Some call it 3.5G. HSPA+ can theoretically get 56 Mbps downlink and 22 Mbps uplink speeds, but currently most HSPA+ networks run at 21 Mbps while a few existing ones run at 42 Mbps.

Doesn’t HSPA+ sound like it pretty much covers the same broadband speed range as WIMAX? When we’ve got a T-Mobile HTC HD2 right next to the Sprint HTC EVO 4G later tonight, which do you think will be faster (assuming we have coverage)?

Of course in the future, 4G speeds may become much faster. See this Gizmodo article for a more detailed explanation.

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About The Author
Adam Z. Lein
Adam has had interests in combining technology with art since his first use of a Koala pad on an Apple computer. He currently has a day job as a graphic designer, photographer, systems administrator and web developer at a small design firm in Westchester, NY. His love of technology extends to software development companies who have often implemented his ideas for usability and feature enhancements. Mobile computing has become a necessity for Adam since his first Uniden UniPro PC100 in 1998. He has been reviewing and writing about smartphones for since they first appeared on the market in 2002. Read more about Adam Lein!
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