Telefonica Germany has launched what it claims to be the world’s first 3.5GHz time division duplex LTE (TD-LTE) Massive MIMO outfield trial. The test involved running 16 terminals simultaneously over 20MHz of spectrum on the 3.5GHz band, achieving a peak downlink rate of 650Mbps on the German O2 sub network in Munich. Massive MIMO is a large-scale, multi-antenna technology which is capable of ‘full three-dimensional beam forming’, allowing the antenna to directly cover the areas where a high capacity for customers is needed, such as train stations, stadiums, city centres, shopping malls and skyscrapers. By owning 84MHz of spectrum in the 3.5GHz frequency range, Telefonica says it will be able to provide customers with new applications such as wireless home broadband (WTTx) and 4K video.
The trial forms part of the TechCity Munich project in partnership with Chinese equipment vendor Huawei, as the pair cooperate on research and development to pave the way for 5G. Founded in early 2016, TechCity is a network of eight eNodeBs around the O2 headquarters in Munich.