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ZTE successfully tests Pre5G 3D-MIMO on China Mobile’s network

Kit maker ZTE says its Pre5G network technology is one step closer to commercial roll out after getting its three dimensional multiple input multiple output (3D-MIMO) technology to work on China Mobile’s commercial network.

The pre-commercial test, conducted jointly with China Mobile’s Guangdong provincial subsidiary and the China Mobile Research Institute, shows how 3D-MIMO equipment can boost network throughput and coverage in areas with a high concentration of tall buildings. It has wider implications for network migration too.

ZTE has pioneered 3D-MIMO technology as a means of potentially creating four-fold boosts to data throughput on the network. At the edge of a network cell, the performance boost is almost twice as high, with seven-fold increases in data rates, according to ZTE’s test data.

The 3D-MIMO equipment’s performance advantage was created by tweaking the technology to achieve increasingly precise beam forming and more effective spatial multiplexing. By doing so, ZTE argues that it can significantly strengthen a network’s resistance to interference. This is turn improves the performance of cells which contributes to the overall resilience and power of the network’s output.

The 3D-MIMO kit has now become a cornerstone of ZTE’s Pre5G technology, which provides continuity between fourth and fifth generations of mobile networking. ZTE’s 3D-MIMO base stations have 128 built-in antenna elements and advanced baseband vector processing chipsets. They can work with existing 4G long term evolution (LTE) infrastructure and user terminals, which should make it easier for operators to install them.

In June 2014, ZTE was the first vendor to propose the concept of Pre5G, and the company launched its Pre5G base station Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in March 2015. The Pre5G base station blends base band unit (BBU) and remote radio unit (RRU) technology, which could allow mobile operators to create 5G networks out of their existing 4G LTE network infrastructure.

Discover the latest developments on the road to 5G at 5G World in London 28-30 June 2016

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