Ericsson, NSN rack up LTE deals in Asia

Following Alcatel-Lucent's recent wins in China, two of its rivals have snapped up more deals across Asia as European equipment manufacturers continue to benefit from the LTE rollout programmes of operators in the Asia-Pacific region.

Both Ericsson and Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) said they have been picked as a supplier for Taiwan's first LTE tender by Chunghwa Telecom for its countrywide LTE deployment throughout 2014, although neither vendor provided details on the extent or value of the respective contracts.

Ericsson described itself as a "main supplier" and said the deal includes the radio access network (RAN) and rollout services. The Swedish vendor said it has also won the tender to be the sole supplier for the evolved packet core, and will be responsible for the RAN in the capital, Taipei.

NSN said it has been picked as a supplier to Chunghwa Telecom's LTE network, which represents a new LTE reference for NSN, although the vendor has been working with Chunghwa Telecom for 15 years on 2G and 3G. Chunghwa Telecom also extended its existing contract with NSN as sole supplier of its island-wide 3G HSPA+ network to further increase the network capacity.

In other markets, NSN said China Telecom has picked it as a major partner for its nationwide LTE rollout, although again few details were provided on the exact nature of the contract, such as how much of the deal relates to TD-LTE and how much to FDD-LTE. NSN did not respond to requests for further information.

Alcatel-Lucent also recently said China Telecom has picked it as one of three vendors to supply the operator's TD-LTE and FDD-LTE networks, and NSN's announcement suggests it is also one of these three. Like its rivals China Mobile and China Unicom, China Telecom has recently won a TD-LTE licence in China, although FDD-LTE licences are not expected to be issued until well into 2014.

China Mobile, which is focusing on building a TD-LTE network in China, has already selected nine vendors including NSN, Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent as well as local heavyweights Huawei and ZTE. The operator also recently opted to deploy metro cells--small cells deployed in public areas--from Alcatel-Lucent in its TD-LTE network. China Mobile launched its TD-LTE service on Wednesday, and will market its TD-LTE service under the 4G brand "And," which can be translated as "a new dream."

Last but not least, Ericsson said it has been selected by Japanese operator KDDI as one of the prime vendors to deploy its LTE system and Evolved Packet Core network.

Under the contract, Ericsson said it will provide a LTE radio access network based on RBS6000 as well as the Evolved Packet Core. The radio access network is based on FDD-LTE. In addition to network solutions, Ericsson will provide related services such as network rollout and systems integration. The vendor added that this is the first time Ericsson and KDDI have collaborated to implement a radio access network.

For more:
- see this Ericsson release
- see this separate Ericsson release
- see this NSN release
- see this separate NSN release

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