At this year’s CTIA 2011, AT&T’s Ralph de la Vega announced plans to bring on a lineup of leaner, less power-intensive smartphones to its recently unveiled 4G network.
So how exactly does AT&T plan to combine a leaner design with the joy of an improved battery life? According to de la Vega, the company will incorporate a technology known as “circuit switch fallback”. This technology will use phones running on the operator’s network that use a single radio to ride along the LTE waves, then AT&T will default to a “circuit switch-based 3G” signal when out of range. If this turns out to be true, then the technology could stand to give AT&T a competitive edge over its industry rivals Verizon and Sprint.
No word on when these leaner LTE handsets are slated to make it into consumer’s hands, so for now we’re left just taking Ralph de la Vega’s word on it.