SK Telecom announces commercialisation of LTE-A Pro technologies


SK Telecom has announced that it has successfully commercialised five-band Carrier Aggregation (CA) and 4X4 MIMO, which are key technologies of LTE-A Pro, the last stage of LTE evolution. It aims to enhance its data transmission speed and performance to represent an early application of 5G technologies that support Gbps-level data speeds and massive network capacity.

SK Telecom’s five-band CA LTE-A Pro service supports up to 700Mbps data rates, enabling users to download 2GB within 23 seconds. This service is currently available in 53 cities in Korea.

The company has also combined three-band/four-band CA and 4X4 MIMO to launch the 900Mbps LTE-A Pro service. This service is currently operational in main areas of six major cities namely Seoul, Busan, Daegu, Gwangju, Daejeon and Ulsan. It expects the latest premium smartphones to support LTE-A Pro services. It is also planning on combining the five-band CA LTE-A Pro service and 900Mbps LTE-A Pro services to aggressively expand to cover more than 50% of the Korean population by 2017 end. It is also working towards launching 1 Gbps LTE-A Pro service in H1/2018 by combining five-band CA or four-band CA with other key LTE-A Pro technologies like 4X4 MIMO.

SK Telecom’s bandwidth resources as of February 2017: 10MHz bandwidth in the 800MHz band, 20MHz bandwidth in the 1.8GHz band, 10MHz bandwidth in the 2.1GHz band, 10MHz + 20 MHz bandwidths in the 2.6Ghz band.

As this publication reported at the start of this year, South Korean cellular carrier LG U+ has employed the services of Juniper Networks to carry out a routing deployment based around network functions virtualisation (NFV). Among the offerings were auto-recovery and auto-healing features that addressed major resiliency objectives for LG U+. Third-party hosted operating systems, hypervisors and orchestration tools were also supported with modular customisation.

The telecommunications market in South Korea has garnered $32.1 billion in service revenues, according to a recent study from Wise Guy Reports. The overall telecom service revenue is estimated to generate $32.9 in 2016 grow at a CAGR of 0.7% during 2016-2021, primarily driven by the growth in data segments, with mobile revenue accounting for 60.7% and contribution of mobile data to mobile services revenue reaching 79% of the total telecom revenue by 2021.

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