Vodafone has decided to launch their 4G+ network. As ITWire notes, Vodafone upgraded their network to LTE-A which will allow their 4G network to give improved speeds to customers.
But, wait a minute. Isn’t this just an upgrade to 4G? Is there a reason that we are giving it a new name? Of course not. Vodafone is in fact upgrading their networks by deploying an “aggregation of 4G carriers across the network.”
But the notion that this is in anyway above or beyond a 4G network is laughable. Again, this is an upgrade of the network. But even speed tests show that this is in no way a game-changing upgrade for consumers.
This move comes off as Vodafone’s way of saying, “Hey, we can’t say we offer 5G so we will just add a “+” to our network name to make it seem as if it is a brand new network!”
Since 2010, we have seen wireless carriers across the world claim to offer new networks when in fact the service was simply an upgrade from what was currently being offered. Carriers began pushing their 4G technology years ago when the carriers didn’t offer even remotely close to 4G speeds. So, did they improve their service to get up to par with the definition of 4G?
Nah, they simply lobbied the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) to change the definition so that barely improved 3G speeds were suddenly deemed “4G”. Then T-Mobile, AT&T and others started fighting about who’s 4G network was the best when their actual networks were barely offering 3G speeds.
Anyone remember when the iPhone 4S magically became a 4G device when iOS 5.1 was released? All it took was a small line of code (as Karl Bode put it). In reality, AT&T simply wanted to make their HSPA network be called a 4G network and AT&T admitted to as much.