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MTN South Africa rolls out Huawei's CloudAIR 2.0

MTN South Africa rolls out Huawei’s CloudAIR 2.0

MTN South Africa has completed the first commercial deployment of Huawei's CloudAIR 2.0 solution to share spectrum between 2G, 3G, 4G and NB-IOT radio technologies in the 900MHz band.

In a statement issued by the companies, the CloudAIR 2.0 solution is said to support overlap of 2G, 3G, 4G and NB-IOT services in the 900MHz spectrum band and "enables MTN SA to make more efficient use of its limited 900MHz spectrum allocation, and achieve a 45% increase in LTE throughput within the band."

Giovanni Chiarelli, Chief Technology and Information Officer for MTN SA, said: "Spectrum is an extremely precious asset. This new network optimisation technique improves spectral efficiency and gives MTN the ability to deploy LTE within the same 900MHz band alongside GSM, UMTS and NB-IOT, while significantly improving LTE coverage and user experience."

Edward Deng, President of Wireless Network Product Line of Huawei, said: "The spectrum cloudification sharing capabilities of CloudAIR 2.0 enable the deployment of different radio access technologies within the same spectrum. This solution can allocate and adjust spectrum resources according to the changes of mobile traffic and avoid legacy radio access technologies from occupying prime spectrum, thereby improving spectral efficiency."

"CloudAIR 2.0 is a valuable solution that can hasten radio technology evolution, to increase network capacity, and improve customer experience," he added.

MTN SA and Huawei established a Joint Innovation Programme in 2017 to research and trial innovative technologies in MTN SA's network.

Earlier this month the two companies launched what was touted as Africa's first 5G field trial in Pretoria. Speeds of 520Mbps downlink and 77Mbps uplink were reported to have been achieved during the demonstration.

At the trial Chiarelli said next generation services such as virtual and augmented reality, ultra-high definition video streaming, and cloud gaming require massive capacity and higher user data rates.

"The use of millimeter-wave spectrum bands is one of the key 5G enabling technologies to deliver the required capacity and massive data rates required for 5G's Enhanced Mobile Broadband use cases. MTN and Huawei's joint field trial of the first 5G mmWave Fixed-Wireless Access solution in Africa will also pave the way for a fixed-wireless access solution that is capable of replacing conventional fixed access technologies, such as fibre."

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