du, from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC), together with Nokia and MediaTek, has achieved successful carrier aggregation (CA) by combining spectrum used by three Time Division Duplex (TDD) carriers.
The trial was conducted by using Nokia’s commercial AirScale Baseband and massive MIMO products, powered by its ReefShark chipset, as well as pre-commercial software running on du’s live network. Additionally, MediaTek provided its 5G mobile platform with the MediaTek Release-16 M80 modem.
Aggregating two bands with high bandwidth – 200 MHz of N78 and 100 MHz of N41 – has driven the companies to achieve the world's highest spectrum throughput, reaching a data speed of 4.520 Gbps.
By combining spectrum from different bands, CA enhances network coverage and capacity, allowing service providers to make the most of 5G spectrum and offer improved data rates, coverage and performance. Furthermore, it enables service providers to lower the cost of deploying 5G networks while improving the customer experience.
du CTO Saleem AlBlooshi commented, “Our customers are becoming more closely connected to technology with our superior 5G network. We are excited to achieve the highest throughput ever by using such advanced technology; thanks to our collaboration with Nokia and MediaTek. This milestone will enable us to plan for the new and enhanced services that we will be able to offer with 5G and put us in a leading position to highlight our commercial 5G capabilities. Strengthened by the industry-first trial with Nokia, we are able to create, market and deliver our services whilst ensuring unmatched speed, capacity and coverage.”
Mikko Lavanti, senior vice president, mobile networks, Nokia MEA, said, “Carrier Aggregation is the key to unlocking high throughput also in the Sub-6 GHz spectrum bands, which additionally provide great coverage. The mid-band allocations allow for 100 MHz wide 5G carriers, which translates directly into higher peak data rates and increased average data rates for users, giving them access to more attractive services. Nokia’s industry-leading 5G Carrier Aggregation solutions help operators maximize the benefits of their spectrum assets, as our collaboration with du demonstrates.”
Miles Sun, general manager of corporate sales at MediaTek Asia and Africa, added, “Our vision is to work with the ecosystem to continuously enhance 5G capacity and performance with features that add value to consumers of smartphones and mobile broadband 5G devices. This collaboration with du and Nokia is an important step in making this vision a reality in the UAE’s advanced 5G market.”