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The marketing guys got their way when ITU caved in and allowed e.g. HSPA+ and LTE to be called 4G, even though neither fulfil the original definition of 4G.

ref: http://www.itu.int/net/pressoffice/press_releases/2010/48.aspx


Interestingly it's North America, the region with the strongest fragmentation of wireless technologies, that started messing up designations and so has been confusing consumers. In addition frequency bands are often called by odd abbreviations like PCS or AWS which sounds as if completely different technologies are involved and makes it even harder to figure out handset/network compatibility. I guess many consumers don't even consider using their handsets on another network.
Anyway it's worrying that the ITU okayed these misnomers.

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