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Ericsson has added smartphones from Chinese manufacturer OPPO to its 5G ecosystem and has successfully tested a transglobal data call in live commercial 5G networks. This comes just days after it announced a similar arrangement with US carrier Verizon and tech provider Qualcomm.
The project also relied on input from Australian communications provider Telstra and Swisscom, with whom Ericsson and Qualcomm have teamed up to help the telco deploy dynamic spectrum-sharing technology to realise its goal of reaching 90% 5G coverage of Switzerland by the end of this year.
OPPO has now become the first 5G device manufacturer to implement Ericsson spectrum sharing in its smartphone, demonstrating the capability on 29 November in a data call connecting Bern in Switzerland with Australia’s Gold Coast, with the technology deployed in Swisscom and Telstra’s commercial 5G networks at the respective sites.
The call was achieved using spectrum sharing on a 3GPP frequency division duplex (FDD) band. Pre-commercial 5G smartphones from OPPO, powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 5G modem-RF system, were used on both ends of the call.
Ericsson spectrum sharing is designed to allow the deployment of both 4G and 5G in the same band through a software upgrade, and dynamically allocate spectrum based on user demand. It can expand 5G coverage by re-using existing network infrastructure and taking advantage of previous spectrum investments.
The switch between 4G and 5G carriers is claimed to happen within milliseconds, with the aim of minimising spectrum wastage and enabling best user performance. Ericsson says its technology can hasten service providers’ ability to launch 5G services over a wide area and move towards standalone 5G without the need for blanket reinvestment.
Andy Wu, president of the software engineering business unit at OPPO, said: “As a leading global tech company, OPPO proactively works to accelerate large-scale commercialisation of 5G. Our cooperation with Ericsson, Qualcomm, Swisscom and Telstra to facilitate the commercial use of dynamic spectrum sharing technology is part of the in-depth collaborations among the five companies in the 5G era.
“The 5G smartphones that support this technology will provide more stable, seamless and speedy connections, and hence a better user experience in the future.”
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