TeliaSonera in Scandinavia and MetroPCS in the United States first introduced LTE. Most of the world’s LTE subscribers are in the US and South Korea. Verizon Wireless has about 10 million LTE subscribers. South Korea’s SK Telecom has about 5 million and is adding over 40,000 LTE subscribers each day. The number of global LTE subscribers will reach 50 million by the end of 2012. Though Ericsson, Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN), and Alcatel-Lucent are the leading providers of operator equipment, both operators and regulatory agencies in the richest European nations have been extremely reluctant to adopt LTE. So far, there are only three providers of VoLTE (Voice-Over-Long-Term-Evolution): SK Telecom, LG U+, and MetroPCS. In South Korea, there were only two phones supporting VoLTE: Galaxy S III from Samsung Electronics and Optimus LTE 2 from LG Electronics on the VoLTE launching day (August 7, 2012), but all new LTE phones will have VoLTE preinstalled. VoLTE is both faster and clearer than 3G voice.
Ofcom is now saying allowing Everything Everywhere to use existing 1800MHz spectrum for LTE will “will deliver significant benefits to consumers, and that there is no material risk that those benefits will be outweighed by a distortion of competition.”