Ericsson launches commercial Gigabit LTE network in China

Ericsson has launched what it is claiming is a commercial Gigabit LTE network with China Unicom.

As part of the launch, passengers on the Hainan Island high-speed train were able to watch the unveiling ceremony through LTE broadcast technology and the Gigabit wireless network, though the pair are also in the process of setting up the network in Guangdong, Hainan, Shandong, and Beijing.

“This remarkable achievement will fulfil our strategy to offer the most advanced services to individuals and enterprises on the China Unicom network,” said Hao Liqian, General Manager of the Hainan branch at China Unicom. “Our launch ceremony today is important, innovative and fun, since we’re using Virtual Reality on a high-speed train over a high-speed network to prove the worthiness of this launch.”

“We’re literally putting the network into the hands of the subscribers on day one,” said Chris Houghton, Head of Market Area North East Asia at Ericsson. “People will be able to immerse themselves in their video experience and not just understand, but feel, the difference with a Gigabit LTE network while they are moving at very fast speeds. It’s the perfect combination of thrilling speeds – physically and virtually.”

The speeds themselves are achieved through a combination of three standards; Evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services (eMBMS); High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC H.265); and MPEG Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (MPEG DASH). The combination of these standards will address the growing consumer demand for media services, Ericsson has said.

Aside from the networks mentioned above, there are more on-going 1 Gbps trials in Sichuan, Hubei, Shanxi, Jilin and Jiangsu province. While it does seem like a bit of a PR plug, Ericsson is a bit more justified in highlighting the business models of tomorrow, making use of such technologies as artificial intelligence and virtual reality, will make gigabit networks a necessity not a luxury.

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