T-Mobile achieves 1Gbps threshold on unlicensed spectrum

T-Mobile haa achieved speeds of 1.1 Gbps using 12-layer Licensed Assisted Access (LAA) technology. The telco claimed itself to become the first in the world to hit speeds beyond the 1 Gbps threshold on unlicensed spectrum. T-Mobile conducted this trial in together with Ericsson.

Commenting on the development, Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer, T-Mobile, said, “T-Mobile has built the nation’s fastest LTE network by innovating and bringing new technologies to market for our customers. This LAA technology builds upon our deployments of 4×4 MIMO and 256 QAM and will give customers even greater access to near gigabit speeds in 2018.”

Fredrik Jejdling, Executive Vice President and Head of Networks at Ericsson, said, “Breaking the 1 Gbps-mark means that commercial gigabit speeds are not far from reality for many broadband users, with our LAA and MIMO technologies as key enablers. It is also an example of how innovatively we work with partners to push the boundaries of technology and achieve new milestones.”

The demo took place at T-Mobile’s Bellevue, Washington lab using Ericsson Radio System and the TM500 network test equipment from Cobham Wireless. The data speeds were achieved by combining several key LTE technologies including 256 QAM, 4×4 MIMO, and LAA by aggregating two licensed carriers and three unlicensed carriers.

The use of these LTE technologies on unlicensed spectrum complements licensed spectrum and makes it possible for a larger number of operators to reach gigabit speeds in their networks.

LAA has been demonstrated previously on 10 layers, reaching download speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Extending to 12 layers enables speeds exceeding 1 Gbps.

The Ericsson Radio 2205 gives operators the opportunity to deploy LTE on the 5GHz unlicensed band in outdoor micro cell environments. Using LAA, the unlicensed carriers on these radios can be aggregated with licensed carriers on the micro cells or on nearby macro cells.