A consortium of companies comprising Motorola, Huawei, ZTE, Cisco, Nokia Siemens, Alcatel-Lucent along with Sprint and Cleaarwire are petitioning the 3GPP to define a more efficient LTE standard for deployment on the 2.6GHz band should WiMax not be widely adopted outside of the Middle East, South Korea, Latin America and the US.
The group is pushing for the standardization of the newer Time Division-LTE standard on the 2.6GHz band instead of the older Frequency Division-LTE standard being rolled out by TeliaSonera, AT&T, Verizon and MetroPCS on different frequency bands. The main advantage of TD-LTE is the capability to utilize unpaired spectrum for uplink and downlink as opposed to the paired spectrum requirement for FD-LTE, which would allow carriers to operate with increased spectrum efficiency on the aforementioned band.
Specifications for TD-LTE on the 2.6GHz band are expected to be completed next March in the US with the help of the FCC. According to a 2009 10-Q filing, Clearwire is required to stay with WiMax until November 28th 2011 due to agreements signed with intel regarding its investment in the technology, at which point it will decide to either continue to move forward with WiMax or confirm recent speculation by moving to LTE.