The companies will jointly develop Long Term Evolution (LTE) gear based on a common platform that supports both LTE TDD and LTE FDD (frequency division duplex). The products, which will be available this year, include LTE base stations, operation and maintenance sub-systems and self-organizing networks (SONs). (See NEC, WRI Team for LTE.)
The products will mainly be aimed at the Chinese sector, which is set to be one of the earliest LTE TDD equipment markets. Sales and marketing in China will be handled by Wuhan Fiberhome Mobile Communications Inc., which is the joint venture between NEC and WRI that was set up in 2005 to develop 3G equipment. NEC will handle sales of the co-developed equipment in other markets.
Why this matters
This collaboration marks the first time NEC has developed LTE TDD products. The move shows the Japanese vendor's ambition to be a player in next-generation mobile broadband technology in one of the world's largest mobile markets and, specifically, for the world's largest mobile operator by subscribers, China Mobile Communications Corp. , which has been pushing hard for global acceptance of LTE TDD. (See China Mobile Opens Up on LTE TDD Trials , China Mobile Flexes LTE Muscle and China Mobile Preps LTE Network.)
But NEC's interest in LTE TDD is not limited to China. The vendor assumes there will be a market for LTE TDD in India as well, according to a spokesman. But he added that NEC didn't know at this time where LTE TDD technology will be deployed beyond these two countries.
There is so much interest in LTE TDD developments right now that Light Reading has set up a dedicated Briefing Center for all the news about this emerging mobile broadband technology.
- Teeing Up LTE TDD
- China Mobile Opens Up on LTE TDD Trials
- LTE TDD: In Mobile, Size Matters
- Going WiMax to LTE Down Under
- Alvarion Hearts TD-LTE
- TD-LTE in Japan?
- China TD-LTE Latest
— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Light Reading Mobile