DOCOMO paves the way for 5G with multi-element antenna demo

2 Dec 2014

Japanese mobile operator NTT DOCOMO has carried out a live demonstration of its multi-element antenna/circuit integration technology for fifth-generation (5G) technology, the Nikkei reports. The cellco, which has been developing ‘elemental technologies’ with a view to launching 5G commercially in or after 2020, unveiled a new ultra-thin filter – designed for 15GHz-band multi-element antennas – at an open house demonstration held on 28 November. DOCOMO’s 5G architecture is expected to be rolled out in an ultra-high frequency band (i.e. 6GHz or higher) and will utilise multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO).

As reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in September this year DOCOMO announced plans to set up two new business units – the Innovation Management Department and the 5G Laboratory – from 1 October 2014, to strengthen its innovation, research and development (R&D) in next generation mobile technologies. The new units will provide a hothouse environment to drive DOCOMO’s R&D activities, and to help with the international standardisation of 5G. Both units fall under the control of the Japanese carrier’s R&D Innovation Division, and the announcement comes at a time when DOCOMO has already upped its FY2014/15 CAPEX forecast for 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) to JPY465 billion (USD4.2 billion), up from 4G investment spend of JPY387.8 billion in FY2013/14.