Verizon Hit By Too Much LTE Demand, Pushing Some Customers Down To 3G

You know those Verizon ads where the company brags about its flippin’ awesome 4G and LTE coverage maps? Those may look pretty on an art museum wall, but the nation’s largest wireless provider admits that it may not currently have enough LTE bandwidth to go around in some markets, meaning some users are being thrown back in time to 2009, forced to use the Verizon 3G network.

“There are certain pockets where we’re absolutely going to experience that down tick from the LTE network down to 3G because of capacity constraints,” admitted VZW’s Fran Shammo (not to be confused with Vince ShamWow) during an investor conference on Tuesday.

The issue seems to be that LTE users have become the company’s biggest data hogs, with 64% of VZW’s traffic being used by the 33ish% of its customers with LTE devices. So all that advertising and pushing of LTE devices to consumers worked, but the company can’t always make enough of its network available to meet all customers’ demands.

CNET reports that Shammo (not to be confused with Shamu) told investors that VZW is investing more money into the LTE network, along with investments in small cell technology and using more spectrum to build up network capacity.

“By the end of this year you are going to see all those issues dissipate,” Shammo said. “And then going into next year we will be ahead of the curve again.”