Verizon Wireless says its LTE markets passed the 200 mark yesterday. The network's launch in seven new markets and expansions in 17 others on Thursday brought Verizon's number of LTE markets to 203. It plans to cover more than 260 million people by the end of this year, higher than its previous goal of 250 million. Verizon has a healthy lead over AT&T, whose LTE network is currently live in 28 markets. 

InterDigital has signed a patent license agreement with u-blox AG covering wireless modules that run on 2G, 3G, LTE and LTE-Advanced, among other products. Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed, but InterDigital said the agreement was "royalty-bearing." U-blox makes GPS modules, chips and software for the consumer, industrial and automotive markets. 

Battery performance is a "critical factor" in wireless subscriber's overall satisfaction and brand loyalty, according to a new report from J.D. Power and Associates. "Short battery life can result in perceived phone problems, higher rates of merchandise returns and customer defections," said Kirk Parsons, senior director of wireless services at J.D. Power and Associates, in a report. Owners of 4G smartphones ranked battery performance lower than customers who owned 3G devices. Parsons said smartphone owners who are highly satisfied with their device's battery life are more likely to repurchase the same brand of smartphone, compared with owners who are less satisfied.