Nokia and Vodafone Idea complete first stage of DSR deployment

3 Jun 2020

Finnish vendor Nokia and Indian cellco Vodafone Idea have completed the first phase of what they claim is the world’s largest deployment of Dynamic Spectrum Refarming (DSR) technology. In a press release from Nokia, the vendor also claimed that the pair had rolled out India’s largest Massive MIMO solution. The DSR solution was rolled out to key cities nationwide and enables the company to optimise the use of its vast spectrum portfolio; the cellco was created by the merger of two long-standing mobile operators – Vodafone India and Idea Cellular – in mid-2018 and the enlarged entity holds spectrum rights comprising a total of 1,846MHz across five bands and 22 operating areas. According to Nokia, its DSR solution allows Vodafone Idea to dynamically share spectrum across different technologies and to automatically change spectrum allocation in line with evolving spectrum usage.

The vendor notes that it has also deployed 5,500 TD-LTE Massive MIMO cells in the 2500MHz band in eight circles, namely: Mumbai, Kolkata, Gujarat, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh East, Uttar Pradesh West, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh. The rollout will help the cellco meet the growing demand for mobile data, with Nokia claiming that its mMIMO solution supports ‘exponential traffic growth by bringing extreme flexibility and automation’ whilst allowing providers to adapt to evolving traffic patterns. In addition, the technology will also help prepare Vodafone Idea’s network for the adoption of 5G in the future.

Commenting on the development, Vodafone Idea CTO Vishant Vora was quoted as saying: ‘Dynamic spectrum refarming provides us with more network capacity and data speed to enable us to deliver best-in-class network experience to our subscribers. Vodafone Idea was the first one to trial the DSR and I thank Nokia for the close partnership. Similarly, we have the largest deployment of [Massive MIMO] in India and our investment in Massive MIMO technology significantly helped us in meeting the growing data demand during the COVID-19 crisis.’