Cincinnati Bell, one of America’s smaller operators with barely over 500,000 subscribers, has jumped into the whole 4G marketing game. They say that they’ve just turned on a new HSPA+ network, yet somehow forget to actually mention whether that’s 21 Mbps HSPA+ or 42 Mbps HSPA+, but they’ve got no problem claiming that they can now offer “speeds that are twice as fast as other national wireless companies”. So now that they’ve got this new shiny network up and running, what revolutionary whiz bang smartphone are they going to offer to best take advantage of it? Enter the Huawei Ascend X 4G; it packs a 4.1 inch screen with your typical 480 x 800 pixels of resolution, 5 megapixel camera, and a 1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. With a 2 year contract it’ll cost you just $99, but if you opt to pay for it in full it’ll be a surprisingly affordable $350. How fast of a modem does the Ascend X actually have? It’ll do 14.4 Mbps, theoretically, real world you can expect about half of that.
It’s pathetic how watered down the term “4G” has become. We were furious when AT&T decided to call 14.4 Mbps capable devices 4G, and it looks like Cincinnati Bell is hoping on the same bandwagon. When it comes down to actual performance, the only 2 operators that offer anything close to a 4G network in America are Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile, the former opting to go with LTE and in benchmarks can provide download speeds faster than what you get in your home, the latter going with 42 Mbps HSPA+ and can give roughly the same speeds, but right now said speeds are currently limited to a sole USB modem.
They’ll be 42 Mbps HSPA+ smartphones on the market in 2012, we’re sure of that, but if you want to tap into the fastest network possible today then it’s no competition. Head to your local Verizon store.
[Via: Phone Scoop]