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Singtel achieves Asia-Pacific first Gigabit speeds in LAA trial with Ericsson

Singapore, 11 December 2017 - Singtel and Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) have achieved an Asia-Pacific first in wireless technology by delivering a peak speed of 1.1Gbps in a joint trial of a new configuration of Licensed Assisted Access (LAA) technology.

Conducted in a Singtel laboratory, the trial delivered speeds that breached the 1Gbps barrier by combining several key LTE technologies including 256 QAM, 4x4 MIMO, and aggregating two licensed and three unlicensed spectrum bands on a TM500 Test System device[1].  

Mr Mark Chong, Singtel’s Group Chief Technology Officer says: “We are very encouraged by this breakthrough in peak speeds. In Singapore, a large percentage of mobile traffic is generated indoors with more mobile customers browsing the web, streaming video and accessing cloud applications on the go. We are now in a position to deploy LAA technology to boost our LTE mobile capacity to meet increasing traffic demand. This will allow us to deliver a faster and more reliable mobile connectivity experience even during peak periods.”

The unique 12-layered LAA configuration used in the trial will provide 2 to 3 times faster than prevailing peak LTE speeds, resulting in enhanced user experience, especially in high traffic indoor environments such as shopping malls.  Following this successful trial, Singtel will explore the feasibility to deploy the technology on Singtel’s network.  

Mr Martin Wiktorin, Country Manager for Ericsson Singapore, Brunei & the Philippines, says: “Licensed Assisted Access took wireless technology to a whole new level, delivering the increased capacity and faster speeds that operators demand as they evolve their networks. This trial is a significant milestone in the use of LAA, pushing the limits of Gigabit LTE in a unique configuration of advanced technologies.”

This latest breakthrough extends the partnership of Singtel and Ericsson in 4.5G LTE and trialling 5G in Singapore. Earlier this year, high download speeds of up to 800Mbps were achieved on Singtel’s high-performance LTE network by deploying 256 QAM downlink, 4x4 MIMO and triple carrier aggregation techniques. In October 2017, the partners jointly established a 5G Centre of Excellence to facilitate 5G development in Singapore.

Singtel’s 4.5G LTE network offers Singapore’s fastest and widest mobile data speeds at 500Mbps nationwide.

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[1] In the trial, four layers with 4X4 MIMO on licensed spectrum were used, as well as 2 layers on a second licensed band, and six layers with LAA (2 layers X 3 unlicensed bands). The Ericsson Radio System hardware used included Radio 2203 for the licensed spectrum and Radio 2205 for the LAA (unlicensed spectrum). All radios were connected to a single Baseband 5216. Test device supplied by Cobham Wireless and Stellent Networks Pte Ltd.