Evolution of RAN: Ericsson increases SoftBank data speeds with Elastic RAN

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Ericsson has successfully completed the first commercial implementation of Ericsson Elastic Radio Access Network (RAN) for SoftBank’s mobile network in Japan.

Elastic RAN is included within the Ericsson Cloud RAN solution and was developed specifically to improve users’ mobile broadband experience through elastic coordination of users and cells.

With Ericsson Elastic RAN, an unlimited number of cells can be coordinated across the entire network providing great flexibility in the aggregation of the different network cell carriers independent of user location. Coordinating and aggregating cell carriers improves user data speeds and overall network performance.

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The results of the Tokyo train station commercial implementation show that downlink throughput increased by up to 40 percent during peak hours for commuters with three carrier aggregation enabled smartphones.

Hideyuki Tsukuda, Senior Vice President and Deputy Head of Technology Unit, SoftBank Corp., says: “The Japanese market is highly developed, and our customers enjoy using the latest mobile broadband technologies with their smartphones and applications. We are excited to partner with Ericsson in the first introduction of the Elastic RAN solution to enable peak performance of the most advanced smartphones in the world, in the densest and most challenging areas of our network. We are now expanding Elastic RAN deployment to further deliver high performance throughout our network.”

To further enhance the user’s mobile broadband experience in Japan, SoftBank will continue to deploy Ericsson Elastic RAN throughout dense urban network areas. As strategic partners, Ericsson and SoftBank will also work on further development of Elastic RAN to continue the enhancement of this capability.

Mikael Eriksson, Head of Ericsson Japan, says: Tokyo presents a challenging network environment with very high mobile data usage with short distances between cell sites. This makes inter-cell coordination complex, which is critical to the aggregation of cell carriers required to achieve high performance. Elastic RAN introduces a new paradigm with respect to the way we achieve inter-cell coordination by creating borderless coordination areas. We are pleased to work with SoftBank to meet their customers’ evolving and ever-expanding needs.”

Ericsson is present today in all high traffic LTE markets including US, Japan and South Korea, and is ranked first for handling the most global LTE traffic. In addition, forty percent of the world’s total mobile traffic is carried over Ericsson networks. More than 270 LTE RAN and Evolved Packet Core networks have been delivered by Ericsson worldwide, of which 200 are live commercially.


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