Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 29th Oct 2012 18:14 UTC
Google While Microsoft is unveiling all about Windows Phone 8, Google ruined the party a little bit by 'leaking' all about Android 4.2, the Nexus 10 tablet, and the new Nexus phone, the LG Nexus 4. There's some pretty awesome stuff in here from Google - except for the fact the devices themselves are kind of ugly.
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RE[3]: Nexus 4
by saso on Thu 1st Nov 2012 10:56 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nexus 4"
saso
Member since:
2007-04-18

Isn't the real problem that there are multiple incompatible LTE standards? You'd have to make separate models for each version.

In a sense. The incompatibility seems to stem from the fact that LTE uses wildly different frequency bands. According to Wikipedia it's at least the following:

* North America: 700/800/1700/1900 MHz
* South America: 2500 MHz
* Europe: 800/900/1800/2600 MHz
* Asia: 1800/2600 MHz
* Australia: 1800 MHz

So in total it appears there are 8 bands with wavelengths from 11.538cm to 42.857cm. In practice this means you'll need more than one antenna to get good reception on all bands (if you aren't familiar with electrical engineering, you can view an antenna like the string of a violin and the electromagnetic waves it receives like a bow - naturally a certain length string wants to resonate only at a certain frequency); probably three antennas, as the wavelengths seem clustered around 3 values: 37.5cm (700/800/900 MHz), 16.6cm (1700/1800/1900 MHz) and 12cm (2500/2600 MHz). Perhaps some bright engineer might be able to combine these into a single one, as the wavelengths appear close enough for some harmonic resonance to kick in (16.6 * 2 = 33.2, 12 * 3 = 36).

Next come the filters, amplifiers and dipoles. Much of this can be done digitally nowadays, but there's nothing like a good analog preamp to make sure you have good signal clarity. In any case, these are miniature in modern ICs, so adding a bunch more isn't going to hurt manufacturing terribly (after all, pentaband phones are common nowadays and don't seem to suffer terribly inflated costs due to their radios).

The real kicker, though, is testing and certification. While LTE is a standard, knowing the companies implementing base station equipment, it's often a hit-or-miss success story with compatibility, especially as the standards get more complex. LTE is enormously complex and very young, so equipment hasn't yet had the time to mature, so there might be serious issues here that need to be ironed out. Obviously, when you're planning on selling an unsubsidized phone without carrier cooperation, you want it to be as safe on the compatibility side as possible. This, probably, more than anything, forced Google to abandon LTE and go instead for the tried and true UMTS standard.

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