Telstra and Ericsson attain 2Gbps 4G speeds

A year after launching gigabit LTE, Telstra and Ericsson have announced attaining 2Gbps speeds across 4G by utilising 4x4 MIMO and 256 QAM, and aggregating 100MHz of spectrum across three frequency bands.
Written by Corinne Reichert, Contributor

Ericsson has announced reaching speeds of 2Gbps across Telstra's 4G network via the aggregation of five 20MHz LTE carriers on three frequency bands in a demonstration.

The trials were carried out using Ericsson's Baseband 6630 and Radio 4415 products, as well as its Gigabit LTE network software; Netgear's Nighthawk mobile router; and Qualcomm's Snapdragon X24 LTE modem.

As well as aggregating 100MHz of spectrum across bands 1, 3, and 7, the companies also utilised 4x4 Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (4x4 MIMO) and 256 Quadrature Amplitude Moderation (256 QAM) technologies to reach the 2Gbps peak speeds.

"With the ever-increasing demand for data and the need to provide our customers with a superior user experience, we are always striving to provide new solutions and develop advanced technologies," Telstra Networks MD Mike Wright said.

"Following Telstra's world-first gigabit-enabled network launch in January 2017, we are delighted to again be partnering with Ericsson and Qualcomm to double these speeds."

The 2Gbps announcement came just over a year after Telstra and Ericsson launched gigabit 4G in January 2017.

Telstra and Ericsson are also continuing to trial 5G technologies together, including MIMO, adaptive beamforming and beam tracking, and OFDM-based waveforms in the telco's newly launched 5G Innovation Centre in the Gold Coast.

CEO Andy Penn had told ZDNet last month that 2018 would bring wide-scale trials across the globe, along with further standardisation and spectrum allocation, adding that Telstra has only physical implementation and chipset aspects remaining in its preparation work for the extensive 5G trial on the Gold Coast.

Telstra last week showed off its first 5G "handset", which Ericsson shipped over from Sweden and is currently the size of a filing cabinet and weighs 200kg. It will be shrunk down into a tiny piece of silicon for smartphones "very, very quickly", according to Wright.

The handset equipment was loaded onto the back of a ute, which drove around the streets providing a live, 360-degree video feed to users in the innovation centre via a virtual reality (VR) headset.

With the innovation centre also stocked with Ericsson workers, head of Ericsson Australia and New Zealand Emilio Romeo told ZDNet the 5G Innovation Centre is part of the memorandum of understanding Ericsson signed with Telstra on 5G.

Telstra similarly launched a 5G testing centre on the Gold Coast back in November, at the time also announcing the completion of the world's first 5G data call using 26GHz millimetre-wave (mmWave) spectrum on Telstra's production core network.

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