MTS, Ericsson and Qualcomm demo Rel-13 LAA

MTS has announced what it claims is the first commercial trial of License Assisted Access in Russia, in partnership with Ericsson and Qualcomm.

The trial was also apparently the first time a commercial Ericsson product has been used for Rel-13 LAA (in this case the good old Pico RBS 6402), and it also used a Qualcomm Snapdragon X16 LTE mobile test device. The trial used unspecified licensed spectrum together with the unlicensed 5 GHz band, but the announcement failed to crow about speeds-and-feeds for some reason.

“Delivering the level of mobile connectivity our subscribers expect, across a wide variety of environments, is a primary focus of MTS,” said Andrei Ushatskiy, MTS VP of Technology and IT. “This successful demonstration is the first of its kind in Russia, and shows our commitment to exceeding our customers’ expectations with enhanced experiences.”

“LAA enables more operators globally to offer Gigabit LTE, which is an essential foundation when introducing the 5G mobile experience, and we look forward to working with infrastructure vendors, OEMs, and network operators to advance mobile connectivity for subscribers across the world,” said Yulia Klebanova, VP of Biz Dev for Qualcomm Europe.

“LAA uses unlicensed spectrum to boost data speeds, offering subscribers the chance to enjoy enhanced LTE experiences on their devices,” said Arun Bansal, Ericsson SVP for Europe and Latin America. “This technology allows LTE and wifi users superior performance in both indoor and outdoor environments by sharing the spectrum in unlicensed bands.”

The debate around the use of unlicensed spectrum to augment mobile broadband remains unresolved, with plenty of people still concerned about the degradation of other wireless communications, especially wifi. This is likely to be resolve on a country-by-country basis and maybe this trial indicates Russia has a relatively benign LAA environment.

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