Singtel announced it working together with Ericsson to pilot massive MIMO and cloud RAN on Singtel’s LTE network as part of its planned evolution to 5G.
Ericsson’s AIR 6468 radio, providing 64×64 massive MIMO capabilities, will be tested and progressively deployed on Singtel’s LTE network. Massive MIMO is key to achieving Gigabit LTE speeds as it improves spectral efficiency to triple or quadruple the number of data paths of cellular base stations.
Both companies will also embark on a pilot of cloud RAN, which will provide Singtel with the flexibility to centralize, distribute, scale and virtualize radio access network functions to efficiently meet performance requirements today and on the road to 5G.
Video traffic represents more than half of mobile traffic today. It is set to rise further with increasing adoption of video applications such as augmented reality, virtual reality and 360-degree video, which imposes high demand on network capacity. This is why networks need to evolve to gradually achieve ultra-high bandwidth, pervasive connectivity and low latency promised with 5G, said Yuen Kuan Moon, chief executive officer, Consumer Singapore, Singtel,
“Data traffic is on the rise and will increase exponentially with 4K video, virtual reality and augmented reality services on the horizon. We are investing ahead to ensure that our networks have the capacity and speeds that will offer our customers the best mobile data experience in Singapore.”
Arun Bansal, head of Business Unit Network Products at Ericsson, said, “Our collaboration with Singtel provides a unique opportunity to be part of their 5G journey.”
Singtel and Ericsson first signed a 5G MoU in January 2015, and demoed what they billed as the first 5G system in Southeast Asia in August 2016, achieving a downlink speed of 27.5 Gbps.