Galaxy S4 will be first phone to use new Verizon spectrum

Samsung's flagship phone will get a software upgrade to work on the additional frequencies

By , IDG News Service |  Mobile & Wireless

Verizon Wireless customers buying the recently released Samsung Galaxy S4 will be the first who can start using a new spectrum band that the carrier will start turning on later this year.

The carrier plans to equip its LTE network to use the additional spectrum, in the Advanced Wireless Services band, in the next several months. It will significantly expand the capacity available on the high-speed cellular network.

Galaxy S4 owners will be able to turn on AWS LTE service on their phones through a software upgrade in the coming months, with the Galaxy S4 becoming the first mobile device that can use the band, Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney confirmed on Tuesday. The news had first been reported by Bloomberg News. The Galaxy S4 for Verizon went on sale May 23.

Though the additional spectrum won't increase the top speed of Verizon's LTE network, it will make more frequencies available for use. That should improve a subscriber's experience when many other users are vying for the network.

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage and networking technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Stephen on Twitter at @sdlawsonmedia. Stephen's e-mail address is stephen_lawson@idg.com

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