STC has announced another milestone in its 5G commercial network development, demonstrating new radio (NR) time division duplex (TDD) and frequency division duplex (FDD) carrier aggregation (CA) using Ericsson Spectrum Sharing (ESS) in FDD band and on a single MediaTek Dimensity 5G chipset.
The company established the 5G Non-standalone (NSA) data call by aggregating 20MHz on FDD spectrum (shared with LTE using ESS) and 100MHz on TDD spectrum in live network conditions in Riyadh. Additionally, NSA Dual Connectivity was enabled in order to aggregate two more LTE carriers using 40MHz total bandwidth.
The combination of NR FDD 700MHz and NR TDD 3.6GHz provides benefits in both coverage and capacity enhancements. Using NR FDD 700MHz with Ericsson Spectrum Sharing (ESS) solutions enables spectrum sharing between 5G NR and LTE for more efficient spectrum usage and NR coverage extension of mid-band TDD The tests seamlessly showed that aggregating 5G connections can provide users with greater throughput and enables STC to efficiently manage 5G higher capacity.
The 5G NR CA unlocks new sources of spectrum in both the mid-band and Low-band radio frequencies. NR CA will allow advanced RAN coordination, higher Peak Rate Throughput, extended coverage and increased efficiency while maximising the use of spectrum assets.
Commenting on the success of the demonstration, Eng. Khaled Al Dharrab, VP, Infrastructure Sector, STC, said: “It is with great pride that we report such world-leading successful trials and technology advancements. STC is committed to continuous innovation and leadership, in order to offer the highest possible value to its deserving customers. These tests were conducted on STC live network using Ericsson’s and MediaTek’s latest and most advanced innovative solutions. This deployment is fully compliant with the latest world standards and specification. STC pledges to continue to push technology boundaries in order to serve the Kingdom’s vision 2020 objectives.”
Mathias Johansson, Vice President and Head of Saudi Arabia and Egypt at Ericsson Middle East and Africa, noted: “We are pleased to achieve together with STC and MediaTek this outstanding milestone of non-standalone FDD and TDD carrier aggregation on a commercial network. Ericsson´s 5G carrier aggregation solution is the next game-changer to boost coverage and capacity. By combining the low-band spectrum with mid-band we help STC to deploy a better 5G and ensure the best user experience.”
Rami Osman, Director Corporate Sales Middle East and Africa at MediaTek, added: “MediaTek is at the forefront of NR CA innovation, developing and testing the next generation of 5G NSA and SA technologies to bring robust 5G coverage to consumers around the world. Our Dimensity portfolio of high performance and ultra-low power chipsets support several different carrier aggregation configurations for comprehensive NR CA support.”