Sprint tops 275Mbps in 4G tests with carrier aggregation

26 August 2016 | James Pearce


US carrier Sprint has achieved peak speeds of 275Mbps over LTE as part of a three-channel carrier aggregation lab test.

The operator used an LG G5 handset during the lab test, which is evaluating overall performance, speed and reliability ahead of the deployment of LTE Plus on its network.

Carrier aggregation bonds together bands of spectrum to create wider channels. This results in greater capacity and faster speeds on mobile devices.

Sprint has already rolled two channel carrier aggregation, which brings two bands of spectrum together, in 237 LTE Plus markets in the US. It has delivered peak speeds of more than 100Mbps using 40MHz Sprint’s 2.5GHz cell sites.

Sprint claims that three channel carrier aggregation will offer speeds of more than 200Mbps, with the operator planning to use 60MHz of spectrum to support it.

Two channel carrier aggregation, three carrier aggregation and LTE Plus only works on selected devices. Currently, Sprint offers 22 two-channel ready smartphones, and just six three channel-capable devices, though these will be ready for use as soon as it rolls out the technology through a software update.

“Our holdings of more than 160 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum in the top 100 U.S. markets give us more capacity than any other carrier in the US,” said Sprint COO (technology) Günther Ottendorfer.

“This capacity enables us to reach very high speeds, as well as provide innovative unlimited data plans to our customers while keeping pace with the growing demand for data.”