Industry Showcased the World's First 3.5GHz Smartphone & Calls for Synchronization During MWC 2014
SHENZHEN, China -- 3.5GHz Interest Group successfully organised the 8th 3.5GHz Roundtable on 23 February 2014 during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Over 100 participants from all over the world including UK Broadband, Japan SoftBank, Saudi Mobily, Philippine Smart, Spain Neo, Italy Linkem, Saudi ITC, France Bollore, Canada Xplorenet, Azerbaijan Azqtel and DirectTV Group; regulators from UK and China; vendors and industry partners including Huawei, Intel, Sequans, Mitrastar, Gemtek, industry analyst from Analysys Mason and many others have attended the meeting.
3.5GHz LTE is just another LTE band which is the widest among 3GPP bands. It is supported by two 200MHz bands, giving a total of 400MHz ultra wide bandwidth. This would give operators the unique advantage of building super speed LTE networks, which is highly desirable among global mobile operators when building a perfect heterogeneous MBB network. In Jan 2014, all 4 mobile operators in Japan including SoftBank, KDDI, Docomo and eAccess, have shown their high interest in acquiring the newly released 120MHz spectrum at 3.5GHz TDD, most probably with 40MHz block assignments.
In August 2013, SoftBank has completed 3.5GHz LTE-A network trial and achieved an astonishing 770Mbps throughput through carrier aggregation during outdoor field tests in Ginza. Europe has confirmed that they adopt TDD as the best choice for 3.5GHz LTE in the European standard. UK Ofcom updated their plan and published a consultation paper to release an addition 150MHz of 3.5GHz at band 42 as well as 40MHz of 2.3GHz TDD spectrum around 2015. China government conceived 3.5GHz is a very important TDD band and has started the evaluation to speed up release of 3400-3600MHz, also shared their experience in reinforcing synchronization policy upon releasing TDD spectrum to the 3 operators in China.
Saudi Arabia operator ITC recently decided to develop 3.5GHz LTE TDD in valued areas including capital Riyadh and high value city Dammam. Huawei is the vendor to provide the solutions for ITC. Several operators have commercial 3.5GHz LTE TDD networks and some early pioneers have already started the migration from WiMAX to LTE TDD and hundreds are expected to follow in 2014.
Intel launched their XMM7260 chip during MWC 2014 which will support TDD Band 38-41 with many other FDD bands and plans to include 3.5GHz band LTE TDD commercial product in the very near future, which implies that 3.5GHz would further extend not only to smartphone but also notebook and tablet markets. Based on the Huawei Ascend D2 platform, Huawei has demonstrated the industries first 3.5GHz multimode multiband demo smartphone which can support CSFB during the event.
3.5GHz Interest Group encourages the global industry to recognize 2014 as the right time to even further speed up commercial launch and ecosystem development. It also suggests releasing the spectrum in at least 40MHz large blocks and apply a common synchronization downlink/uplink configuration. 3.5GHz Interest Group further advises GTI and 3GPP that creation of any special configuration for TD-LTE is not recommended. This is vital in order to speed up 3.5GHz ecosystem development and maximize utilization of the bandwidth. With all these developments, there is an increasing trend of more operators focusing to deploy 3.5GHz converged with all other frequency bands to build high quality MBB heterogeneous networks.