Nokia makes 5GTF connection, unveils plans for 4.9G gear

A Nokia AirScale base station, recently. (Source: Nokia)

Nokia touted its pre-standard 5G chops on Monday by announcing that it had completed what it says is the world’s first connection based on the 5GTF (Verizon 5G Technology Forum) “pre-standard” draft spec for 5G, and that it will introduce its “4.9G” technologies by the end of this year.

The 5GTF connection took place in a laboratory environment in Oulu, Finland, on 23 December, using Nokia’s AirScale radio access with the Nokia AirFrame data center platform running on Intel architecture, together with the Intel 5G mobile trial platform as an end-user device.

The test utilized 100 MHz on the 28-GHz frequency band to stream video over the air to the device.

Nokia said that the test adds another key component to the development of 5G and the implementation of the first 5G applications, demonstrating the ability to provide fast pace implementation according to early standards including device interoperability.

Meanwhile, Nokia said it will introduce new 4.9G technologies for its AirScale line by the end of 2017, allowing operators to dramatically enhance their network performance and manage the significantly higher infrastructure demands on the path to 5G.

AirScale technologies to be launched include a 4.9G massive MIMO adaptive antenna that Nokia says will increase cell capacity by up to five times, and a new 4.5G Pro micro remote radio head (RRH) that will allow operators to take advantage of unlicensed spectrum using Licensed Assisted Access (LAA).

Nokia and Sprint will demo the massive MIMO adaptive antenna at Mobile World Congress 2017 using 3D beamforming software to deliver throughput gains of up to eightfold uplink and fivefold downlink. The demonstration will leverage commercially-available devices operating on TD-LTE band 41.

Also, Nokia is introducing enhancements to its AirScale base station that will allow operators to rapidly densify networks in city locations while slashing costs and CO2 emissions with the most compact footprint while reducing operational costs by up to 40%. The new AirScale multiband remote radio heads include the world’s first triple-band example, while Nokia is also launching new frequency variants.

Nokia Zero Emission 3.0 will reduce operators’ energy consumption by up to 50% using new hardware and software features while the Intelligent Deployment Platform uses automation to accelerate AirScale deployment life cycle by up to 40%.

At MWC, Nokia Bell Labs will stage a liquid cooling demonstration converting 80% of base station waste into useful heat to reduce site power costs.

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