"Wrong. The "TFA" is wrong. That's why that article is doing such a disservice to its readers. The CSAT algorithm in LTE-U small cells first begins by listening for other Wi-Fi access points transmitting in its vicinity. It is in fact able to listen not just to "energy" being transmitted on a given frequency - it is in fact able to receive and decode Wi-Fi beacons. If it find a channel with no existing occupants, it'll just use it. But if it has to share, it listens to determine the number of existing occupants. Then it transmits for only its portions of the time. And during its "off" cycle, it listens again to determine if there are new Wi-Fi access points that came online, and automatically reduces its share of the air time the next time around. So not only does it check initially, it checks continually for other occupants, to keep things fair."
This was not the case the CableLabs study which did indeed use a commercial implementation. Further, listen before talk in LTE-U is only now being a proposed as part of the standard. There are vendor specific implementations that already have this, but the standard does not and did not when the tests were done.