Nokia Networks strikes billion dollar TD-LTE deal with China Mobile

Nokia Networks struck a $1 billion (€908 million) deal with China Mobile covering the supply of TD-LTE infrastructure as part of the operator's plan to build the world's largest network based on the technology.

In a deal signed by senior executives, Nokia Networks will provide China Mobile with its TD-based LTE Advanced (LTE-A) core network equipment, which covers the full spectrum of cellular technologies from 2G through to 4G. The kit will be VoLTE capable, and Nokia Networks will also provide software and professional services including network planning, implementation and maintenance.

The infrastructure company stated that the deal will see it support China Mobile as it seeks to build the world's largest TD-LTE network by the end of 2015 by deploying 1 million compatible base stations.

Mike Wang, president of Greater China at Nokia Networks, said the agreement was a "milestone" in a relationship with China Mobile that spans two decades.

He noted that the agreement also covers leveraging Nokia Networks' infrastructure and technical expertise to boost China Mobile's Internet of Things (IoT) plans "for areas as diverse as healthcare and connected cars."

Nokia Networks also signed an MoU with the China Mobile Research Institute covering the development of 5G technology.

That agreement was announced as Nokia Networks separately revealed it had achieved a transmission speed of 19.1 Gbps during a joint trial of 5G technology with South Korean operator SK Telecom.

The vendor hailed the transmission rate as a major step in the development of the next generation technology in a statement announcing the trial. The speed was achieved using 256 QAM, 8x8 MIMO transmission and 400 MHz of bandwidth, it explained.

Specifically, the trial with SK Telecom demonstrated access point sending a downlink transmission over the air to a receiving mobile terminal, enabling the companies to evaluate radio channel performance on a cmWave frequency band. The demonstration also provided the companies with feedback when the receiving terminal was moved or the path between the device and the access point was blocked.

"The 19.1 Gbps transmission speed we achieved almost meets one of the key capabilities of 5G defined by the ITU-R," noted Alex Jinsung Choi, CTO of SK Telecom.

For more:
- see Nokia Networks' China Mobile announcement
- read this separate SK Telecom release

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