Still, a recent industry study has found greater competition among LTE providers in Europe, leading to lower prices for European consumers.
The study published last October by Wireless Intelligence, part of the GMS Association, found a gigabyte of data cost $2.50 on a European LTE plan, about half the global average of $4.86.
In Sweden, which became the first country to switch on a commercial LTE network in 2009, an LTE contract can cost as little as $0.63 per gigabyte. The study compared this to U.S. operator Verizon's best value 4G data tariff, which cost $7.50 per gigabyte at the time.
By mid-2012 there were 38 operators offering LTE across 18 European markets — almost half of the global total — the study found.