Fourteen Canadian municipalities will receive 4G LTE (long term evolution) wireless service from Telus on Friday, as the telecom company kicks off a plan to expand its LTE service to the rest of the country by the end of this year.
The 14 cities included in the initial launch are: Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Kitchener, Waterloo, Hamilton, Guelph, Belleville, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Yellowknife and Halifax.
LTE specifications provide download speeds of 100 Megabits per second (Mbps) and upload speeds of about 50 Mbps. It is considered to be ideal for serving increasingly bandwidth-hungry applications used by mobile and Internet users for activities such as video streaming, video conferencing and online gaming.
The launch will not result in higher service rates, according to Telus.
“Consistent with this approach of giving customers clear and simple service terms with no surprises, our current rate plans will apply to our 4G LTE customers,” said Eros Spadotto, executive vice-president of technology strategy and operations, for Telus.
“We are not introducing a new rate plan or charging a premium to enjoy our new network,” he said.
Last year, a new dual cell (DC) upgrade to Telus’ HSPA (high speed packet access) network enabled the company to achieve DC-HSPA+ capability, a 4G network status. With a network speeds of up to 42 Mbps and uploads of up to 11 Mbps, this became Telus stepping stone to a much faster LTE network such as the one run by Rogers Communications.
Telus customers can experience the full capabilities of its 4G LTE network with devices such as Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE tablet, the LG Optimus LTE smartphone or the Novatel Ovation MC679 4G LTE Mobile Internet Key, which will be available in Telus stores and online on February 10. The 4G LTE-capable Samsung Galaxy Note will also be available on February 14.
The 4G network launch also complements another new Telus service called Optik on the go.
Optik on the go allows Telus Optik TV customers in B.C. and Alberta to view a selection of commercial free TV On Demand shows and movies on their mobile devices, tablets and laptops. The application allows users to start, pause, rewind and fast forward their shows just like they do at home.