3 Hong Kong, the mobile communications division of Hutchison Telecom Hong Kong Holdings (HTHKH, stock code: 215), and Huawei today announced the successful demonstration of an end-to-end FDD and TDD LTE-A commercial network in Hong Kong using carrier aggregation (CA) technology and terminals chip-powered (SnapdragonTM X12 LTE) by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.
The two companies also demonstrated applications of the new-generation FDD and TDD combined network in different markets, ushering in a new era of FDD-TDD LTE-A network in Hong Kong.
3 Hong Kong achieves technological breakthrough
In the FDD-TDD integrated network demonstration, 3 Hong Kong used Huawei One LTE Solution to aggregate an FDD carrier (specifically, paired spectrum in either the 1800 MHz or 2600 MHz band) with TDD 2300 MHz spectrum via CA technology, creating an LTE-A network with two component carriers (2CC).
It is the first time a mobile operator, a telecoms solutions provider and a chipset manufacturer have collaborated on an end-to-end FDD-TDD LTE-A commercial network in Hong Kong. They have also created the world’s first FDD-TDD CA commercial network on IP radio access network (RAN) architecture.
The technological breakthrough shows that 3 Hong Kong can support FDD and TDD standards within intra-band or inter-band carriers across different spectrums. The converged network will increase network speed and provide remarkable telecoms services for 3 Hong Kong users. The initiative is in line with 3 Hong Kong’s “Better at 3” philosophy of continuous improvement.
CA technology combines two or more intra-band or inter-band carriers, thereby providing wider bandwidth to deliver the higher data transmission rate required for the development of the Internet of Things.
Demonstrating Hong Kong’s first end-to-end FDD and TDD LTE-A commercial network at today’s press conference, 3 Hong Kong, Huawei and Qualcomm showed how an integrated FDD-TDD network can support innovative applications in the Internet of Things era.
Planned 2016 deployment for 3CC FDD-TDD LTE-A dual-mode network
3 Hong Kong is currently the only local cellular operator that possesses 900, 1800, 2100, 2300 and 2600 MHz spectrums. It has used carrier aggregation to combine carriers in the FDD 1800 MHz and 2600 MHz paired spectrum. 3 Hong Kong is also building a TDD network, which it plans to launch later this year.
The operator is committed to integrating LTE FDD and TDD networks. The devices that can support 2CC FDD and TDD LTE-A standards will be available early next year and 3 Hong Kong is expected to launch the respective network around that time. Additionally, 3 Hong Kong is in the deployment phase of 3CC CA-capable LTE-A networks, which it aims to make available for commercial launch in the second half of next year.
Peter Wong, Chief Executive Officer and Group Managing Director of HTHKH, said: “CA technology enables us to fully utilize valuable spectrum resources and devise long-term plans on network deployment so that we can continue to improve the outstanding data services we offer our customers. 3 Hong Kong plans to re-farm the 900 and 2100 MHz spectrums for our LTE network in the near future, and we remain committed to establishing a 5CC LTE-A network.”
Wong added: “3 Hong Kong has combined the strengths of mobile, fixed and Wi-Fi networks. As the largest Wi-Fi service provider in Hong Kong, our Wi-Fi network has already adopted the advanced 802.11ac standard, providing speeds up to 1.3 Gbps. In addition to continuous network development, we are striving to provide customers with an all-round mobile communication experience with ever smoother and more stable LTE service. We are committed to integrating high-quality content and customer service based on our ‘Making Better’ vision of ongoing improvement.”
Huawei One LTE Solution
Huawei One LTE Solution supports different standards and spectrums and enables smooth network evolution to maximize operators’ return on investment through the SingleRAN hardware platform. Enabled by FDD and TDD CA technology, the One LTE solution can effectively integrate scattered spectrums, maximize spectral efficiency, and improve the user experience.
“FDD LTE and TDD LTE convergence has become an irreversible trend,” said Ryan Ding, President of Products & Solutions at Huawei.
“With the rapid development of mobile Internet services, the available spectrum is becoming increasingly scarce. Operators are eager to discover how they can use the LTE FDD and TDD spectrums to get the best from their resources. LTE TDD can easily resolve capacity issues due to its rich spectrum resources and technological advantages in multiple-antenna systems and other breakthroughs. FDD and TDD networks complement each other and their integration significantly improves both network capacity and coverage. Huawei will continue to work closely with 3 Hong Kong to provide a better user experience through its advanced solutions,” added Ding.