Huawei and China Unicom Verified Distributed Massive MIMO


Huawei and China Unicom jointly verified the first 5G indoor distributed Massive MIMO technology in the industry.

The technology innovatively integrates Massive MIMO into digital indoor systems, pushing both the technological and environment limits of incumbent 5G distributed digital equipment. The test result showed that the technology delivers a peak rate of up to 4.7 Gbps for cells with 100 MHz bandwidth.

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Verification of distributed Massive MIMO in indoor environments

In China, 5G has already been used commercially for one year. Its number of users has increased significantly, and it has been integrating with various industries to create numerous new and diverse industrial applications, including 5G 4K live streaming, 5G smart travel, 5G smart manufacturing, and 5G healthcare.

To embrace diversified development of services, Huawei and China Unicom launched a joint innovation project – 5G Capital – in Beijing. It was set up to build high-quality 5G networks for individual mobile users, and to empower digital transformation across industries through technological and experience innovation as well as the incubation of ecosystem.

The indoor distributed Massive MIMO technology is one of the innovative applications implemented in the 5G Capital project. This application integrates 5G Massive MIMO with LampSite – Huawei’s digital indoor distributed system – to greatly improve the cell capacity for indoor scenarios that need to provide a premium user experience and enormous capacity. This integration will be hugely beneficial for carriers in expanding 5G applications to more industrial scenarios.

Indoor distributed Massive MIMO will be key to realizing 5G smart stadium, bringing a premium experience concurrently to individual users while also ensuring that dedicated services continue to run smoothly.

It was deployed and verified in the China’s National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA), the industry’s first ever application of this solution. The verification test was performed using multiple terminals, and results showed that the downlink peak rate reached 4.7 Gbps in 100 MHz C-band cells. This result demonstrates that this solution is up to the task of fulfilling the service requirements in dense indoor areas while providing a strong foundation for developing various HD video interactive services.

The indoor distributed Massive MIMO technology represents a new trend for the evolution of indoor 5G capacity solutions. It will be the core of networks intended for transport hubs, large venues, and other high-density heavy-load scenarios where premium user experience must be ensured. It will also help develop new services in smart stadium, smart campus, and smart education, enabling 5G networks to create greater value for society.

Dr. Li Fuchang, Director of the Wireless Technology Research Center of China Unicom Research Institute, said: “At China Unicom, we are committed to improving the quality of products and services through innovation to bring intelligent technologies to customer’s lives and increase the efficiency of production for businesses. To achieve this goal, China Unicom has been working with Huawei to innovate on the indoor distributed massive MIMO technology. With the rapid development of user bases and applications, 5G traffic requirements will increase also rapidly. This solution will help us pursue flexible capacity expansion on live networks, laying a solid technological foundation for continuing to deliver premium 5G experience for customers and diversifying 5G vertical applications for various businesses.”

Marvin Chen, President of Huawei DIS Product Line, said: “Indoor distributed Massive MIMO is a technological leap based on long-term technological accumulation. It will redefine the ways we expand capacity to help operators cope with traffic upsurges and meet service requirements for both individuals and enterprises. Indoor distributed Massive MIMO will play a unique role in commercial networks and be a new starting point toward further technological innovation based on market requirements to provide first-class 5G indoor coverage solutions.”