As the world has ushered in the mobile internet era, existing networks are faced with the conflict between capacity demand surges and insufficient site resources. In this context, ZTE makes innovative use of Massive MIMO technology to enhance wireless spectrum efficiency and boost network capacity. In a commercial network, the average single-carrier peak rate of Pre5G Massive MIMO exceeds 700 Mbps, increasing spectral efficiency by six to eight times as compared wtih that of existing 4G networks. Pre5G Massive MIMO uses beamforming technology to expand from 2D to 3D coverage, and implements intensive and extensive seamless coverage. The technology is flexible and can adapt to high-rise buildings, hotspot macro coverage, stadium coverage, and last-mile scenarios, dramatically improving overall network quality.
Win-Win Cooperation with Hutchison Drei Austria
After ZTE exclusively reconstructed all mobile networks including 2G, 3G, 4G and core networks for Hutchison Drei Austria (hereafter referred to as Drei), Drei ranked first in Austria and second among 10 operators in the German-speaking regions in the third-party test organized by “CONNECT”, a famous communication magazine in Europe. The sharp increase in the number of subscribers causes explosive growth of data traffic. How to use existing spectrum resources to reduce network load and increase user satisfaction has become a major problem Drei has to face. To solve this problem, Drei has chosen ZTE’s Pre5G Massive MIMO solution that helps to resolve firstly the conflict between capacity demand surges and insufficient site resources before 5G commercialization. The solution uses existing sites, spectrum resources, and terminals to deliver network speeds and capacity far superior to 4G networks. Compared with traditional base stations, Pre5G Massive MIMO products are smaller, support the BBU+AAU architecture, and are more suitable for 5G evolution. They also support carrier aggregation (CA) to satisfy operator needs for large capacity, multistream transport, and enhancements in network efficiency, flexibility, and cost. Pre5G Massive MIMO helps Drei improve user experience in high-capacity and heavy loaded areas and relieve its Opex pressure caused by high loads of existing network equipment.
3D-MIMO: Eye-Catching Technique in the Industry
The commercial implementation of Pre5G is a consequence not only of the close collaboration between ZTE and global mainstream operators and their verification tests but also of ZTE’s huge R&D investment and strong R&D capabilities. 3D-MIMO plays an important role in Pre5G commercialization.
3D-MIMO has inherent advantages in TD-LTE 4G networks. Based on uplink and downlink symmetry, it supports measurement of hundreds of channels without adding feedback channels. As a core technology for 4G evolution and 5G, 3D-MIMO provides more precise beamforming and more effective spatial multiplexing to greatly reduce inter-cell interference, enhance anti-interference capability, and improve network performance. Therefore, 3D-MIMO is an important means of improving network capacity for 4G operators with wide coverage.
ZTE started field tests on its 3D-MIMO base stations as early as September 2014. By virtue of its R&D capabilities and leading technologies in the 3D-MIMO field, ZTE won several awards in a year, such as the 2015 GTI Award for Innovative Massive MIMO Solution, the GTB Award for Wireless Network Infrastructure Innovation, and the 2015 Global Technology Innovation Award in 5G Networks by Frost & Sullivan.
Promoting Industrial Partnerships for the Future
As the 5G era approaches, ZTE will go all out with industry partners to bring 5G into reality in standards, spectrum, technology, architecture, practice, and ecology fields. In March 2017, ZTE, China Mobile and Qualcomm announced that they planned to jointly carry out the world’s first low-frequency 5G interoperability data testing (IoDT) in line with 3GPP R15 specifications. In November 2017, the three parties jointly announced they had successfully achieved the world’s first end-to-end 5G NR IoDT system demonstrating a data connection based on 3GPP R15 standard. The successful interoperable connection of the end-to-end 5G NR IoDT system serves as a significant industry milestone towards pre-commercialization of 5G NR technologies at scale, driving rapid development of 3GPP standards-compliant networks and devices.
From the perspective of service applications, ZTE has collaborated with Baidu, China Mobile, and Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications to verify the key technologies of automatic driving, and has became a member of the Apollo alliance, 5G Automotive Association, and other intelligent/automatic driving industry alliances.
From the perspective of standards research, ZTE has worked jointly with many research institutes and universities worldwide to promote 5G development. They have completed core IPR preparation and validation in many aspects, including the MUSA, high-frequency channel model, and Massive MIMO technology.
The best way to predict the future is to create it. ZTE is willing to embrace the great 5G era with innovation, practice, collaboration, and win-win philosophy.
Pre5G, High-end markets, Drei Austria, 3D-MIMO