Ericsson, Qualcomm and Red Technologies have launched what they claim is the "most technically extensive pilot" of licensed shared access (LSA) technology, using spectrum provided by the French Ministry of Defence.
LSA effectively "sub-lets" unused parts of an organisation's spectrum holding to operators, without them incurring interference on the rest of their bandwidth.
French regulator Arcep gave the go-ahead for the trial to use spectrum in the 2.3-2.4GHz band.
Ericsson will provide its radio access solution, which includes carrier aggregation technology and its small cell Radio Dot system. Qualcomm is supplying devices with its LTE-enabled Snapdragon processors.
Parisian start-up Red Technologies will provide its spectrum management platform, which is based on live radio environment maps and self-organising network technology.
French Minister for Digital Affairs, Axelle Lemaire said: “This initiative touches the core of the French telecoms industry and has the potential to considerably enhance the consumer mobile experience in France as well as generate significant economic return. The participants involved are demonstrating commendable foresight and inventive strength."
Thomas Noren, Vice President, Head of Radio Product Management, Ericsson, said: “Sufficient availability of licensed spectrum will be a key asset to allow the deployment of 5G services, with the expected capacity and QoS requirements. LSA is an agile technology approach to boost capacity. The combination of licensed and unlicensed bands is a key 5G technology development area."
Wassim Chourbaji, Vice-President of Government Affairs at Qualcomm Communications, added: “Spectrum availability is a core condition for flourishing technology adoption and innovation. This LSA pilot is therefore a vital step towards the realisation of Europe’s Digital Single Market."