AT&T: LTE phones will sip, not chug, your battery.

According to AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Verga the upcoming 4G/LTE devices will be a lot better for your battery. Instead of using separate (and separately powered) radio chips for 4G and 3G, they will use a single chip that utilizes strictly LTE until you are out of range, then switch over to a 3G radio. He calls this technology “circuit switch fallback” and claims that unlike Verizon and Sprint, whose phones use separately powered radios, the 4G smartphones due to be released later this year will last longer on a single charge.

Of course, this is because the CDMA carriers still use, well, CDMA for their 3G network, and AT&T already rocks GSM/HSPA, on which LTE is based. Whether or not the CDMA chips will be activated if LTE is available is a different story, and we will see how power consumption matches up when the phones hit shelves this holiday season. Don’t forget that AT&T only has 5 cities with LTE as of right now, compared to Verizon’s goal of 175 by next month. If these battery numbers hold water come release time, then maybe AT&T should consider rolling LTE out to more markets.

Sources: CNet, via Engadget

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