As Massive MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) promises to deliver faster connection speeds and more data capacity in high-traffic locations — without using any additional spectrum — Samsung Electronics America and Sprint will demonstrate Massive MIMO technologies at this year’s Mobile World Congress Americas (MWCA).

Occurring at the Samsung Networks booth (South Hall S616), Samsung and Sprint will build upon their recent test of the technology earlier this year in Suwon, South Korea. There, the companies tested Massive MIMO on the 2.5 GHz spectrum in a real-world environment. Sprint wrote test cases and scenarios, and Samsung provided the infrastructure, network design, operation, data collection and data processing resources. The test demonstrated the high potential of Massive MIMO to deliver gigabit LTE services in dynamic, urban environments.

Samsung’s Massive MIMO hardware — equipped with vertical and horizontal beam-forming technology — deployed 32 antennas, representing a four-fold increase in throughput from current, commercially deployed configurations. Leveraging Sprint’s network, the test recorded peak speeds of 330 Mbps per channel using a 20 MHz channel of 2.5 GHz spectrum. It also demonstrated a four-fold increase in capacity per channel, a three-fold increase in cell edge performance and an improvement in the overall coverage area, compared to current commercial deployment.

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With its latest demonstration at Mobile World Congress Americas, Samsung is showcasing its roadmap for advancing the commercial development of a 64T/64R solution. Additionally, the demonstration shows their commitment to LTE Advanced technologies and 5G cellular networks through Massive MIMO hardware, and will highlight the latest milestones attainable with this technology. These milestones include the increase in cell peak throughput by up to eight times, and average cell throughput by over three times, compared to current commercial deployment.

Samsung’s achievements in the deployment of Massive MIMO solutions were recently highlighted in Ovum’s whitepaper, “Massive Multiple Input, Multiple Output Comes of Age.” Ovum emphasized Samsung’s contributions to the deployment of Massive MIMO technology and the unique capabilities of its indoor solution for high-rise buildings.

“Massive multiple input, multiple output provides mobile operators with one of the most efficient ways of adding capacity to their LTE networks, and will eventually support their 5G networks. The Samsung-Sprint massive MIMO trial shows the benefits of this technology in a real-world situation,” says Daryl Schoolar, practice leader for next generation infrastructure at Ovum.

Samsung will begin commercializing these Massive MIMO solutions next month on the TDD band and in 2018 on the FDD band.

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Alok Shah

Alok Shah is vice president of networks strategy for Samsung Electronics America where he steers strategy, marketing and new business development for the North American Networks division. He has nearly 20 years of strategy, technical marketing, product management and engineering experience in the wireless industry. Alok holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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