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SK Telecom to launch world's first 3band LTE-A service

2014/01/20 11:10

By Kang Yoon-seung

SEOUL, Jan. 20 (Yonhap) -- SK Telecom Co., South Korea's leading mobile carrier, said Monday it plans to deploy a mobile network service this year that is four times faster than the current Long Term Evolution (LTE) service.

SK Telecom said it has successfully demonstrated the upgraded service, dubbed the 3band LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) service, by combining a 20MHz bandwidth and two 10MHz bandwidths. It is expected to be available to local users in late 2014 as soon as mobile devices supporting the network are launched by smartphone makers.

The new service is based on carrier aggregation technology, which bundles more than two frequency bands to increase bandwidth, and offers a download speed of up to 300 megabits per second (Mbps), roughly four times faster than 75 Mbps on the existing LTE network, the company said.

It is also faster than 150 Mbps and 225 Mbps for the LTE-A service and the wider-bandwidth LTE-A, respectively.

The 3band LTE-A service will enable mobile devices to download a 800-megabyte movie in 22 seconds, faster than the 1 minute and 25 seconds using the existing LTE services, and 43 seconds with the LTE-A services, according to the company.

SK had demonstrated the wider-bandwidth LTE-A service by aggregating a 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band in November.

The country's No. 1 mobile carrier said it also plans to continue study for 4-band or 5-band LTE-A services for even faster speeds.

SK Telecom plans to showcase a 3band LTE-A service combining three 20MHz bandwidths, providing a download speed of 450 Mbps, at the annual Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, next month.