Unitel and Ericsson first in Africa with 450 Mbps on a commercial LTE network

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Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor

Pretoria – An exciting international exhibition, Shared Sky, was opened by Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor at the Iziko South African National Gallery, earlier today.

Unitel and Ericsson first in Africa with 450 Mbps on a commercial LTE network

  • Unitel and Ericsson partner to achieve major milestone for LTE in Africa
  • 450 Mbps downlink speed accomplished by combining three 20 MHz LTE carriers on Unitel commercial network in Angola using Ericsson multi-standard hardware and software
  • LTE-A Carrier Aggregation enables operators to use spectrum more efficiently to deliver better user experience

Ericsson and Unitel today announced the successful demonstration of the end-to-end LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) Carrier Aggregation (CA) solution capable of supporting data speeds up to 450 Mbps. The demonstration utilized 60 MHz of spectrum, with three 20 MHz LTE carriers in band 3 (1800 MHz), band 7 (2600 MHz) and band 1 (2100 MHz) respectively.

This milestone, which occurred December 5th 2014, marks the first time 450 Mbps speed has been demonstrated on a commercial LTE network in Africa, and is also one of the first demonstrations of its kind in the world. It confirms the maturity and readiness of the Unitel network to support LTE-A 450 Mbps data speed

Amilcar Safeca, Board Member and Deputy CEO, Unitel says: “The 450Mbps demo in Unitel’s LTE commercial network ascertains our leading position in technological innovation not only in Angola, but globally. At the same time, it aims at ensuring that our network has the capabilities to be among the most advanced mobile networks in Africa and in the world. We are enhancing our network to guarantee the best experience to our subscribers when utilizing all the services Unitel has available.”

LTE-A CA enables operators to use spectrum more efficiently to deliver better user experience to customers. Mobile users can enjoy super-fast downloads and better performance of their favorite applications.

Fredrik Jejdling, Head of Ericsson sub-Saharan Africa says: “Mobile broadband is opening up a world of opportunities by facilitating industry transformation and bringing inclusion and empowerment to communities. This is especially true in countries across Africa, where the technology enables access to tools, services, expertise, entertainment, and information that was previously out of reach to the majority.”

Ericsson’s long term partnership with Unitel has yielded several outstanding achievements in the development of LTE and data in Africa. This announcement is indicative of a joint commitment to continued innovation and development on the continent.

At the end of 2013, for the first time in Africa, Unitel and Ericsson demonstrated LTE-Advanced with two carriers’ aggregation using Unitel’s live network and a commercial device. Today, Ericsson is present in all high-traffic LTE markets including the US, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and Canada, and has been selected by the top 10 LTE operators, as ranked by LTE subscription worldwide. More than 200 LTE RAN and Evolved Packet Core networks have been delivered worldwide, of which more than 150 are live commercially.