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Sprint to Start Commercial Deployment of 2.5GHz Massive MIMO Radios in 2018

6 months ago
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Sprint to Start Commercial Deployment of 2.5GHz Massive MIMO Radios in 2018 Image Credit: Sprint

Sprint, Thursday announced its support for the recently ratified Non-Standalone 3GPP 5G NR specification which has the 2.5 GHz spectrum band included.

The latest 3GPP 5G NR specification is the initial part of Release 15 announced at the 3GPP TSG RAN plenary meeting in Lisbon this week.

The specification includes bandwidths up to 100 MHz for an n41 (2.5 GHz) single component carrier vs. today’s 20 MHz per component carrier for 4G LTE. With more than 160 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum available in the top 100 U.S. markets, this gives Sprint the largest nationwide block of sub-6 GHz 5G spectrum available for wide-scale use in the U.S.

Sprint said its priority is mobile 5G, and the company is working with Qualcomm Technologies and SoftBank to develop technologies for wide-scale 5G deployment. Sprint plans to provide commercial services and devices in late 2019.

In addition, Sprint is working with its RAN (Radio Access Network) suppliers – Ericsson, Nokia, and Samsung – for end-to-end availability of 5G NR in Sprint’s 2.5 GHz (n41) spectrum.

Sprint’s initial path to market for 5G will be through the deployment of 2.5 GHz Massive MIMO radios slated for commercial use in 2018. These 64T64R (64 transmitters, 64 receivers) radios will be software-upgradable to 5G NR.

Dr. John Saw, CTO, Sprint
This is an important milestone and we’re making great progress accelerating the development and commercialization of 5G NR in the 2.5 GHz band. 5G will spur dramatic innovation and progress around the world, and we see great opportunity in mobile 5G, massive machine type communications, and ultra-reliable and low-latency communications.

Ray is a news editor at The Fast Mode, bringing with him more than 10 years of experience in the wireless industry.

For tips and feedback, email Ray at ray.sharma(at)thefastmode.com, or reach him on LinkedIn @raysharma10, Facebook @1RaySharma

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