MegaFon claims commercial gigabit LTE in Moscow
09 August 2017 | Alan Burkitt-Gray
MegaFon says it has become one of the first operators in Europe to achieve gigabit speeds on its commercial LTE network.
The company achieved a peak download speed of 979Mbps in Moscow. Alexei Semenov, director of the Stolichny (capital city) branch of MegaFon, said: “We have prepared the infrastructure and used the maximum potential of the company’s unique frequency spectrum.”
MegaFon used Nokia base station equipment for its demonstration, aggregating three carriers each with 20MHz bandwidth – one in the 1.8GHz band and two in the 2.6GHz band. The test was conducted using Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium smartphone, which uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon X16 LTE modem.
“The full functionality of the equipment from our colleagues Sony, Qualcomm Technologies and Nokia can only be used on MegaFon’s commercial network,” said Semenov.
Yulia Klebanova, vice president of business development at Qualcomm Europe, said: “Gigabit LTE is a qualitatively new level of sustainable connection and data download speed for those consumers who use flagship smartphones powered by the Snapdragon 835 mobile platform. Gigabit LTE will also impact other network users: regardless what device they use, they will experience also higher speeds.”
It was only last year that MegaFon demonstrated 450Mbps in Moscow, said Semenov. “Our team continues to develop innovative solutions that allow customers to use the most advanced network services. For us this is not just a record; it is a unique opportunity for our customers and a strategic play to lead in innovation.”
Demetrio Russo, Eastern Europe vice president of Nokia, said: “Today’s demonstration is another important step towards the launch of MegaFon’s 5G network.”
Klebanova agreed: “Gigabit LTE is paving the way to 5G,” she said. “We are excited that Russia became one of the first European countries where commercial gigabit LTE network and device was launched.”
Both Verizon in the US and TIM in Italy have demonstrated gigabit LTE in the past few weeks. Verizon used Ericsson and Qualcomm equipment. TIM used an Asus phone, also fitted with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 chip, along with Ericsson network equipment.
MegaFon claimed an all-time mobile speed record in June, working in St Petersburg with Huawei to achieve 35Gbps.