EE showcases end-to-end 5G network architecture with 2.8GBPS speeds
- EE’s end-to-end 5G network architecture delivers consistent 2.8Gbps download speeds in UK test lab
- Major step forward for network function virtualisation (NFV) with fully virtualised 5G core network on commercial-off-the-shelf hardware in the EE lab
- Cutting edge speeds achieved over active antenna unit with 64x64 Massive multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO) broadcasting 5G New Radio over 3.5GHz test spectrum
EE, part of BT Group, today demonstrated 2.8Gbps download speeds across an end-to-end 5G test network in its UK mobile lab.
The breakthrough test, carried out in partnership with Huawei, linked the fully virtualised 5G core to the 64x64 Massive MIMO active antenna unit broadcasting 5G New Radio to deliver the ground breaking speeds.
The virtualisation of core network technologies for 5G – putting programmable software on commoditised hardware – reduces costs, increases efficiency, and allows for more flexibility in delivering new services.
The latest 5G breakthroughs are on show at the Huawei Global Mobile Broadband Forum, taking place 15 and 16 November, 2017.
Tom Bennett, EE Director of Network Services & Devices, said:
“We’re using our experience in cutting edge 4G technologies and our dedicated partnership approach to ensure technology leadership in 5G. The network architecture we’ve proven today is a huge step forward, and will drive our ambitious rollout timetable to be first for 5G.”
In order to deliver the consistent 2.8Gbps downlink throughput across the end-to-end 5G architecture, EE linked its fully virtualised 5G core network to 100MHz of 3.5GHz test spectrum via the proof-of-concept Huawei 5G baseband unit. The consistent 2.8Gbps speeds and sub 5ms latency were delivered end-to-end, rather than just across the air interface.
EE’s 5G architecture is aligned to Option 3 of 3GPP Release 15, due to be finalised next month and formally ratified in April 2018. 3GPP Release 15 will be the first official, global standards for how 5G will be built.
The 5G firsts have been achieved by the EE and BT engineering teams working in strategic partnership with Huawei.
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EE, part of BT Group, is the largest and most advanced mobile communications company in the UK, delivering mobile and fixed communications services to consumers.
EE runs the UK's biggest and fastest mobile network, having pioneered the UK's first superfast 4G mobile service in October 2012 and was the first European operator to surpass 14 million 4G customers in December 2015. EE has more than 550 shops across the UK. EE's 4G coverage extends to more than 85% of the UK’s landmass (equal to more than 99% of the UK population) and EE has an ambition to extend 4G to 95% UK geographic coverage by 2020.
EE has received extensive independent recognition, including being ranked the UK's best overall network by RootMetrics®; Best Network for five years in a row at the Mobile Choice Awards; Best Network at the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Mobile News Awards; Best Consumer Network at the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Mobile Industry Awards; as well as Fastest Network and Best Network Coverage at the 2017 uSwitch Mobile Awards.
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