Optus activates TD-LTE Advanced carrier aggregation

Optus has successfully begun testing the future of its 4G Plus network by activating the world’s first TD-LTE Advanced carrier aggregation.

Optus announced it achieved single user peak speeds of over 160 Mbps on its commercial 4G Plus network in early December.

“This is the first time in the world that 4G carrier aggregation has been introduced into a live TD-LTE network; not in a lab, but on a fully operational, commercial network,” said Vic McClelland, managing director, Optus Networks.

“Our abundant spectrum holdings in the 2300 MHz band; new technologies like carrier aggregation; and our 4G Plus TD-LTE network are the foundations of the Optus network of the future,” added McClelland.

When testing the future of its 4G Plus network at its test facility in St Marys, west of Sydney, Optus achieved a throughput of 520 Mbps, by combining four 20 MHz channels of the 2300 MHz spectrum band into 80 MHz.

Optus activated LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation on its 4G Plus network in Melbourne by joining two 20 MHz channels together on its 2300 MHz 4G Plus spectrum. This kind of carrier aggregation is capable of delivering a theoretical maximum speed of up to 220 Mbps to a single user on compatible mobile devices. In initial testing, peak speeds of over 160 Mbps to a single device have been achieved.

“In Melbourne, we’ve paired two channels in the same frequency band, on our 4G Plus network, which we expect to provide the consistent speed experience that customers want and expect from 4G networks of the future,” McClelland said.

Optus 4G Plus is currently live in select areas of Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and  Adelaide and gives customers additional capacity to connect to a 4G network– much like the benefit of having access to new lanes on a highway – as customers with compatible mobile devices can connect to either the 1800 MHz or 2300 MHz Optus 4G networks.

Carrier aggregation will further enhance customers’ network experience by effectively lifting the speed limit on the highway for Category 6 mobile devices with even faster 4G chipsets, which will be widely available in early 2014.

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