Ericsson launches China Unicom 1Gbps 4G network

Ericsson has used its three LTE-B-enabling technologies of eMBMS, HEVC H.265, and MPEG DASH to launch a commercial 989Mbps peak-speed 4G network across Beijing, Guangdong, Shandong, and Hainan.
Written by Corinne Reichert, Contributor
(Image: supplied)

Ericsson has announced launching a commercial gigabit-speed 4G LTE network for China Unicom using Ericsson's three LTE-Broadcast (LTE-B)-enabling solutions.

The 979Mbps peak-speed network has so far been launched in Beijing, Guangdong, Shandong, and Hainan, as well as along a high-speed train line on Hainan Island, while trials are ongoing in Sichuan, Shanxi, Hubei, Jilin, and Jiangsu provinces.

The gigabit-speed network is enabled through the combination of three standards using Ericsson technology: Evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services (eMBMS); High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC H.265); and MPEG Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (MPEG DASH).

Ericsson said this combination of technologies is aimed particularly at enabling the video-heavy consumption of mobile broadband, especially while in transit.

"To accelerate the development of China Unicom's video strategy, Ericsson supported China Unicom with eMBMS in the high-speed train scenario so that passengers could enjoy high-definition video without buffering on the network," Ericsson explained.

According to Ericsson, it has now delivered more than 270 LTE RAN and evolved packet core networks across the globe, 200 of which are currently live commercially.

The networking giant at the start of this year launched the world's first 1Gbps commercial network with Australian carrier Telstra using 256 Quadrature Amplitude Moderation (256 QAM), 4x4 Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (4x4 MIMO), and carrier aggregation across spectrum bands.

Ericsson and Telstra will further launch an LTE-B network across Australia by 2018.

It similarly achieved 1Gbps 4G with Singtel in January using 256 QAM, 4x4 MIMO, and triple carrier aggregation, and earlier this week attained 1.07Gbps speeds across Verizon's LTE network in the United States using three 20MHz carriers of frequency-division duplex (FDD) spectrum, 12 simultaneous LTE streams, 4x4 MIMO, and 256 QAM per carrier.

Elsewhere in China, Ericsson also launched an open Internet of Things (IoT) platform with China Telecom in July, powered by its global Device Connection Platform.

China Telecom was also involved in testing Chinese telecommunications technology solutions provider ZTE's FDD-LTE Massive MIMO solution, powered by its MSC2.0 vector processing chip, at the end of last year.

China Unicom has similarly been working with ZTE on 5G New Radio (NR) field trials, in July attaining rates of up to 2Gbps for single-user equipment.

ZTE made use of its pre-commercial sub-6GHz 5G base station at the 3.5GHz frequency with 100MHz bandwidth alongside Massive MIMO technology during the trial with China Unicom's Guangdong branch.

Last month, ZTE completed several major 5G scenario trials during phase two of China's national 5G tests, including network slicing, in an effort to test its chips and equipment ahead of commercialisation, and announced the global release of its Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) Intelligent Energy Management System.

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