ZTE announced it has successfully completed pre-commercial field testing of what it claims is the world’s first pre-5G 3D/massive MIMO (Multiple-Input Multiple-Output) base stations in partnership with China Mobile, accelerating the deployment of this next-generation technology.
Using ZTE’s latest 64-port/128 antenna 3D/Massive MIMO base station, with a much higher PDSCH (physical downlink shared channel) beam forming gain, the test shows an excellent coverage enhancement for tall buildings, with improvement for indoor reception, the company claimed.
This further demonstrated the superiority of the new technology over existing intelligent antennas in complicated multi-path urban and indoor areas, as well as open rural areas, it stated.
The new ZTE solution is enabled by the company’s high-performance vector processor SOC chipset, and brings 3D/Massive MIMO, a key technology for 5G, closer to commercial reality.
The CTO of ZTE’s Wireless Division, Dr. Xiang Jiying, said that: “As the number of antennas is ten times more, 3D/massive MIMO had appeared to be a distant pipe-dream. However, the test indicates that we are taking a big step forward to realising the new technology using 4G handsets.
“This is a result of a number of innovations, and is in line with the pre-5G concept previously proposed by ZTE. We will continue to deliver pre-5G features to offer 5G-like experience before 5G standardisation.”
The vice president of China Mobile Research Institute, Huang Yuhong, stated: “The pre-commercial field test of ZTE 3D/massive MIMO was impressive and exceeded our expectations. This will definitely accelerate the pace of qualification and commercial deployment, and reinforce the advantages of TDD (time-division duplex) technology. China Mobile will continue to strengthen our partnership with ZTE in the development of 3D/massive MIMO and other 5G technologies.”
Dr. Liu Guangyi from China Mobile Research Institute, who participated in the test, added: “This test enhances our confidence in advancing 3D/massive MIMO ahead of the expected schedule. In addition, after the test, we also uncovered some new scenarios for 3D/massive MIMO.”
3D/massive MIMO, using the multi-antenna technology, improves wireless spectrum efficiency exponentially, increases network coverage, system capacity, and helps telecom operators maximise the use of existing site locations and spectrum resources.
According to the simulation, the throughput can be four-six times higher. ZTE attaches high importance to the research and development of 5G products, and has achieved breakthrough developments in a series of key technologies.
In particular, ZTE said it has achieved excellent performance in backward compatibility with 4G, forward service of 5G, product commercial capability, antenna design, engineering convenience, and system performance. 3D/massive MIMO not only supports China Mobile’s mainstream 4G frequency bands, but is also compatible with existing commercial terminals.