SK hundreds of meg LTEThe world is on the way to gigabit LTE. Using 40 MHz, Korea's largest mobile company is upgrading 26,000 cell sites over the next few months. The maximum speed is 300 megabits, shared; if the cell site is crowded or you're far from the tower, the speed is lower. 95+% of the time, however, you can expect 50-100 megabits. SK is using 20 MHz in the 1.8GHz band, 10 MHz in the 800MHz band, and 10MHz in 2.1 GHz band. 

SK claims this is the first commercial 3 band deployment, but there are dozens to come. LG, Korea's #3, intends to deploy next month and KT is in trials. http://bit.ly/1BoDP7N. SK's 26K cellsites for 51 million people is about three times  the density of AT&T or Verizon's network. The American giants have < 50,000 cellsites for 315 million people.

Verizon was first, after Scandinavia, to LTE but now has a distinctly inferior network. While Germany has peak speeds often at 100 megabits, Verizon is still advertising 5-12 megabits. England, France, Finland and many others soon roll out common speeds of > 100 megabits.

The Samsung Note 4 is currently the only available tri-band phone. SK will only sell the phone to "customers  who wish to use the service ahead of others and provide feedback." That will change very rapidly. LG in a few days should announce another tri-band phone. http://bit.ly/1tyo5dW SK is ahead of KT in deploying tri-band and will very rapidly push for wider sales.   

    No one except the engineers believe that gigabit wireless speeds are on the way, but gigabit commercial service is likely in 12-36 months. SK equipment can easily be extended to 5 bands and 500-700 megabit speed. Add MIMO antennas and a gig (shared) is practical. Ericsson has worked with SK and is demo'ing speeds well into the gigabits. 

    Speeds much over a gigabit will probably not be deployed until 2018-2020.

Here's the pr

SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that it launched commercial tri-band LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) service for the first time in the world.

Tri-band LTE-A service offers data speeds of up to 300Mbps by aggregating three component carriers in three different frequency bands: 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band, 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band, and 10MHz bandwidth in 2.1GHz band.

The service is four times faster than LTE and 21 times faster than 3G service. For instance, at its peak speed, Tri-band LTE-A service allows users to download a 1GB movie in only 28 seconds.

Prior to today’s commercialization of tri-band LTE-A Carrier Aggregation (CA), SK Telecom has been offering LTE-A service by aggregating two carriers: It launched 150Mbps LTE-A service by aggregating 10MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band in June 2013, and began 225Mbps Wideband LTE-A  service by aggregating 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band in June 2014, both for the first time in the world. The company has developed the world’s first tri-band LTE-A CA technology in January 2014 and successfully demonstrated the 450Mbps tri-band LTE-A by binding three 20MHz bands at the Mobile World Congress 2014, held in Barcelona, Spain in February 2014.

Moreover, with the successful commercialization of tri-band LTE-A CA, SK Telecom not only secures an important edge in LTE-A 4-band CA and 5-band CA, but also moves a step closer to realizing 5G service. The company, under its technology roadmap on 5G, is making aggressive efforts to develop the world’s fastest telecommunication technology.

SK Telecom plans to offer an unmatched tri-band LTE-A service coverage in Korea. In order to provide tri-band LTE-A service, base stations that support three different frequency bands are required. Tri-band LTE-A is offered in areas where coverage of all three component carriers intersect./Tri-band LTE-A is offered in areas where signals from all three frequency bands – i.e. 800MHz, 1.8GHz, 2.1GHz – overlap

Since the company has already secured Wideband LTE-A coverage in main areas of all 84 cities nationwide - meaning that it already has in place 800MHz and 1.8GHz base stations - it can offer tri-band LTE-A service by simply adding 2.1GHz base stations. The company plans to build more than 26,000 2.1GHz base stations within the first quarter of 2015 to provide its customers with the fastest mobile telecommunications service in Seoul/ Seoul Metropolitan Area, central areas of all cities nationwide as well as all subway lines in Korea.

Galaxy Note 4 S-LTE, the first tri-band LTE-A capable device, will first be sold limitedly to a group of consumers who wish to use the service ahead of others and provide feedback on issues including its performance (e.g. speed, transmission stability, etc.) and convenience features. Through this process, SK Telecom aims to further improve its tri-band LTE-A service to better meet its customers’ needs and provide them with greater value through new mobile value-added services optimized for the ultra-fast tri-band LTE-A. SK Telecom subscribers, including this group of early users, will be able to enjoy the new service at the same price as LTE.

Lee Jong-bong, Executive Vice President and Head of Network Division said, “With the launch of the world’s first tri-band LTE-A service, we will not only provide our customers with unprecedented network speeds, but also offer differentiated and diverse mobile value-added services that meet customers’ needs and interests.”

About SK Telecom

SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM, KSE: 017670), established in 1984, is Korea’s largest telecommunications company with more than 27 million mobile subscribers, accounting for over 50% of the market. The company reached KRW 16.602 trillion in revenue in 2013. As the world’s first company to commercialize CDMA, CDMA 2000 1x, CDMA EV-DO and HSDPA networks, SK Telecom launched the nation’s first LTE service in July 2011. SK Telecom also became the world’s first mobile carrier to launch 150Mbps LTE-Advanced and on June 26, 2013 and 225Mbps LTE-Advanced on June 19, 2014 through Carrier Aggregation. Backed by rapid nationwide deployment, a rich device lineup and diverse mobile value added services, the company secured over 16.3 million LTE and LTE-Advanced subscribers as of October 2014. Also, based on its strength in network operations business, SK Telecom is seeking new growth engines by building ICT convergence business models in areas of healthcare, enterprise solutions, media and education. For more information, please visit www.sktelecom.com or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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Events

Mobile World Congress, Barcelona, Feb 27-March 2 100,000 mob Barcelona. Fares from New York are triple the usual price and hotels even higher - if you can find one less than a hour from the city. Everybody who is anybody goes so everybody who is anybody goes. Beyond the pomp and hot air are a slew of top technical people. Seek them out and make sure yo make appointments in advance with the people you want to see. Hint: You can still get rooms at the hostels in town. Next year, book way in advance to get one of the hotel rooms GSMA have negotiated with the city.

Digital Hollywood Media Summit, New York March 7-8. Victor Harwood always had an enormous number of top people in an almost overcrowded schedule. Senior folks from advertising, all media, marketing and more. VR and AR are heavily represented, from the talent to the salesmen. The price is about half what most shows charge and there are discounts for those with limited resources, including students.  A great way to learn what the most advanced in these fields are doing.

Brooklyn 5G Summit April 19-21st The most sophisticated people in wireless will be there, from the CTOs of NTT and Nokia to the most respected academics on the planet. Incredible S/N. If you can't come to Brooklyn, you must watch the stream. It takes two or three years for most people to catch up to what's learned here.

G.fast Summit, Paris May 9-11 Trevor Linney of BT is deploying 10M lines. John Cioffi promises something astonishing. Everyone in the industry will be there except Broadcom, being their usual antisocial self. On the 9th, Hubert Mariotte of the standards committee has a deep technical tutorial and I have a session for everyone else.

TNO Ultrabroadband Den Haag June 12-15 Always a strong group.

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