The trial completed the first phase of a 5G MoU between the two firms covering 5G components like massive MIMO and UCNC.
ZTE and Telefónica said they completed a pre-“5G” massive multiple-input/multiple-output antenna test in Madrid. ZTE said it was Telefónica’s first pre-5G massive MIMO trial in Europe.
In October 2016, the two companies started work on a massive MIMO program to assess performance in hot spot and indoor coverage scenarios. Results are said to have shown the technology improved base station performance in terms of network capacity and cell-edge data rate up to six-times compared to traditional LTE macro base stations and reduced end-user interference through “3D” beamforming technology, ZTE said.
New applications were also demonstrated in the trial such as virtual reality and 2K streaming videos. Tests used existing 4G devices, including ZTE and other smartphones.
“We are very pleased with the results of the pre-5G massive MIMO live trial with our partner ZTE. … We see a lot of potential for this technology and the capability to bring a better experience for our customers,” said Telefonica CTO Enrique Blanco. “We believe pre-5G massive MIMO technology can solve the internet’s last mile problem by improving internet access and therefore enhancing the user experience. Massive MIMO will be a fundamental technological enabler for future 5G networks.”
ZTE said the trial completes the first phase of a previously signed memorandum of understanding focused on advanced wireless communications, “internet of things,” network virtualization architectures and cloud.
Telefónica also signed a 5G and next-generation radio access network agreement with Huawei covering cloud RAN, 5G radio user centric no cell technology, 5G core re-architect and massive MIMO innovation projects designed to improve spectrum efficiency and build a cloud-native architecture.