ZTE shows LTE modems

Chinese vendor ZTE is showing off two LTE (Long Term Evolution) modems, which on paper will support mobile broadband speeds of up to 100 Mbps, at ITU Telecom World in Geneva.

The AL620 and the AL600 will both support download speeds of up 100 Mbps (bits per second) and upload speeds of up to 50 Mbps when connected to an LTE network, according to their respective spec sheets. Both modems come in the shape of a USB (Universal Serial Bus) dongle.

If there is no LTE coverage, which likely will be a common occurrence during the next couple of years, the AL620 can fall back on standard HSPA (High-Speed Packet Access) at download speeds of up 14.4 Mbps and upload speeds of up to 5.7 Mbps or HSPA+ at 42 Mbps and 11 Mbps, respectively. It can also surf the Internet using EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution) and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service). The AL600 can access the Internet using HSDPA and HSPA+, but it also adds support for EV-DO Rev. A (Evolution-Data Optimized).

The AL620's list of supported LTE frequencies includes both 700 MHz -- favored by, for example, U.S. operator Verizon -- and 2.6 GHz. The spec sheet for each modem also lists support for GPS and an optional MicroSD slot.

Pricing and shipping information for the modems weren't immediately available.

LTE is expected to be the next major standard in mobile broadband technology and carriers have begun to convert their networks to LTE.