AT&T Quietly Lights Up Carrier Aggregation in Chicago
AT&T has improved its LTE network in Chicago and several other markets by using an LTE-Advanced technique called Carrier Aggregation. GigaOm confirmed the soft launch with AT&T SVP of Network Technologies Kris Rinne. With Carrier Aggregation, AT&T has combined the channels of its existing spectrum to double the capacity. AT&T is running LTE in both the 700MHz and AWS bands in Chicago. By aggregating the channels together, AT&T can deliver theoretical peak download speeds of 110Mbps to devices with the proper radio support. At the moment, AT&T is selling only one device with Carrier Aggregation, the Unite mobile hotspot. The Samsung Galaxy S5 is expected to be the first smartphone to support Carrier Aggregation in the U.S. AT&T did not name the other two markets that have access to Carrier Aggregation, but said that more markets on are on the way. Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless are all in various stages of deploying Carrier Aggregation in their own LTE networks.
Coral Blue Galaxy S8 and S8+ Go On Sale In US July 21
Samsung today said the Coral Blue variant of the Galaxy S8 and S8+ handsets will become available to U.S. buyers starting July 21.
Alcatel's Modular A50 Parties with Light Up LED Accessory
Alcatel today followed through on its promise to bring the A5 LED to the U.S., though it has changed the phone's name to simply the Alcatel A50. The phone, first revealed in February, is compatible with a handful of modular accessories, the most significant of which features an LED-covere panel that can blink a few dozen LEDs with color.
FCC Approves What Is Likely the Samsung Galaxy S8 Active
The FCC recently approved a Samsung handset that has all the basic markings of an "Active" variant of the Galaxy S8. The SM-G892A supports AT&T's LTE bands, in addition to Bluetooth and WiFi.
Alcatel's A30 Plus Bumps Up the Screen, Processor, Camera and Battery
Alcatel today announced the A30 Plus, an improved version of the A30 we saw earlier this year. This entry-level Android handset includes a 5.5-inch 720p HD screen (up from 5.0 inches) and a 1.5 GHz quad-core MediaTek processor (up from 1.1 GHz) with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of storage.
AT&T Adds Carrier Aggregation to Several Big Cities
AT&T has expanded the use of carrier aggregation to its LTE network in New York City, San Francisco, and Dallas. Tom Keathley, AT&T's SVP of network and product planning, told Fierce Wireless that AT&T has deployed carrier aggregation "in a significant way." The company plans to further expand carrier aggregation across its network over the course of the year.
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