Cox Communications is just now kicking off slivers of its CDMA network in Virginia, California, and Nebraska, but it's already got its sights firmly fixed on 4G services, too, having announced today the "successful completion" of LTE trials in Phoenix and San Diego supported by infrastructure from Alcatel-Lucent and Huawei. Notably, both voice calling (a hot topic in 4G right now, since there aren't any commercial handsets in the field yet) and HD video streaming were tested -- a nice little tie-in with Cox's cable biz. Airspace for all of this newfound interest in the wireless space comes from Cox's recent spectrum acquisitions in the 700MHz and AWS ranges; granted, even in a best-case scenario these guys would have to negotiated a bunch of serious roaming deals to take their service national, but in the meantime, anyone lucky enough to be within range of a Cox tower might very well be in the first wave of Americans to enjoy the spoils LTE has to offer. Follow the break for Cox's full press release.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, JANUARY 25, 2010

COX SUCCESSFULLY DEMONSTRATES THE DELIVERY OF VOICE CALLING, HIGH DEFINITION VIDEO VIA 4G WIRELESS TECHNOLOGY

Tests in Phoenix and San Diego Mark Key Milestones in the Future Deployment of Next-Generation 4G Wireless Broadband Network

ATLANTA – January 25, 2010 – Cox Communications today announced the successful completion of voice calling and high definition video streaming over wireless networks using fourth generation (4G) Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology. Cox's 4G technology and service trials utilize the AWS and 700 MHz spectrum that it acquired at Federal Communication Commission auctions in 2006 and 2008. Cox spent over $550 million for radio spectrum licenses to support its wireless plans, which include wireless broadband.

Cox conducted the 4G trials in Phoenix and San Diego and chose these markets for the advanced technology-orientation of its residential and business customers, as well as the terrain and suburban density variances of their geographies.

While Cox is testing 4G LTE technology in these markets, it is initially deploying wireless services using the 3G CDMA standard in Hampton Roads, Va., Orange County, Calif. and Omaha, Nebraska.

"On the heels of announcing our initial 3G wireless service deployments, today's news demonstrates our equal commitment to 4G services," said Stephen Bye, Cox's vice president of wireless. "Through the LTE trials, we are utilizing the AWS and 700 MHz spectrum to test voice, data and video applications and services and ultimately readying to deploy 4G wireless broadband services to meet the needs of our customers. We are encouraged by the success of the Phoenix and San Diego tests, which further validate our decision to pursue 4G based on LTE, specifically the 3GPP Release 8 standard." Next month, Bye will expand on our 4G learnings as he participates in a keynote session titled "Ready for Launch of Next Generation Mobile Networks" at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.Collaborating with Cox in conducting the 4G trials and testing the wireless services and applications were Alcatel-Lucent and Huawei.

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Cox trials voice calls, streaming HD video over new LTE network