Pre-5G tech will show the way to new telco standards, claims ZTE

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Technology such as massive MIMO and multi-user shared access (MUSA), dubbed pre-5G, will bridge the gap between LTE and future telco standards, a ZTE executive has claimed.

The Chinese vendor is developing a range of products that it says will advance the telecom industry beyond LTE. The new solutions will offer high throughput and low latency, according to Xiang Jiying, Chief Technology Officer of Wireless Products at ZTE.

For example, it is developing massive MIMO solutions that do not change the legacy 4G air interface. Other solutions include virtual cell technology to help operators evolve from cloud radio to an ultra-dense network, a development that the vendor said would solve interference at the cell-edge of LTE networks.

According to ZTE, new MUSA technology would "significantly" improve capacity, with its coding-based design allowing a greater number of simultaneous users. The technology uses successive interference cancellation receivers, which ZTE said removes synchronisation between users and extends the battery life of a handset.

Finally, the vendor's 4G processing chips have extensible software architecture, which ZTE said could meet any pre-5G requirements by changing the instruction sets, rather than making changes to hardware.

Dr Xiang told delegates at the 5G-ICT Technologies conference in Beijing: “Even though the industry is still working on 5G standardisation, we already have a lot of clarity on 5G user experience and the 5G candidate technologies. Therefore, pre-5G can be defined and implemented even before 5G becomes standardised.”

ZTE is working on research to develop global 5G standards as part of the IMT 2020 (5G) promotion group.

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