How Rogers LTE could change mobile Internet

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Rogers’ Long Term Evolution (LTE) network been touted as a “game-changer” because it may very widen the data pipes we’re becoming so increasingly reliant on. But that’s a long-term play — the short-term change is that the way you consume media is about to change forever.

The launch took place in Ottawa last week because it (and the surrounding area) is the first to make use of the faster speeds. Residents as far as Arnprior, Ontario in the west, Orleans, Ontario to the east, as well as the Hull and Gatineau regions of Quebec currently have access to the LTE network. Rollouts will follow in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal in the fall, with the next top 21 markets in Canada by the end of 2012.

On paper, the speed is impressive. Theoretically, this LTE network can download up to 75Mbps, but the more realistic number is officially pegged at 12 to 25Mbps. That’s easily at least three times faster than what we now get to see using 3G HSPA, so in practical terms, this is definitely a significant step up.

Having been at the launch event in Ottawa to see this first-hand, I witnessed the network stream a 720p live HD broadcast to a laptop. Even better, 1080p movie trailers and other video could stream wirelessly with no latency or lag.

This is pretty cool when you think about watching an HD movie via Netflix, or even streaming HD content remotely from your home. Batches of photos could be downloaded in mere seconds, songs could be bought and downloaded in a flash and data transferred wirelessly in a heartbeat.

But like anything that’s new and cool, this comes at a cost — and a fairly expensive one at that. The lowest LTE data plan is $45 for just 1.5GB, while the highest is $90 for 9GB. Each gig you use above your limit is an extra $10…. Read More [via futureshop]

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