Turkcell looks to microwave to boost upcoming LTE network

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Turkcell is putting microwave technology at the heart of its forthcoming LTE rollout, after partnering with NEC on a new infrastructure project.

After buying the widest range of spectrum in the long-awaited auction in August, Turkcell is planning to turn on its LTE network next April, offering speeds of up to 375MBps.

Turkcell said it has seen a rapid rise in data traffic across its 3G network, as consumers buy more smartphones and tablets. NEC’s iPASOLINK iX compact outdoor radio system will be used to help meet LTE demand.

The tech supports frequencies from 6GHz to 42GHz and can be applied to the likes of access and aggregation networks. The sub-band free feature allows frequency bands to be configured at the installation point or remotely after shipping, rather than in the factory. NEC said this makes the system more flexible to any changes in frequency bands.

Atac Tansug, Fixed Network Director, Turkcell, said: “With an LTE service, our customers will not only enjoy better web access and communications, but also a vastly improved user experience for video, music, games and other multimedia content. We are working with NEC to quickly develop a highly reliable network infrastructure which will be operational by the time we launch our LTE services on April 1, 2016.”

Turkey's eventual switch to LTE technology could have been postponed indefinitely after the country's president said he wanted it to jump straight to 5G.

The auction, which was finally held in August, raised 1.5 times expectations, with €1.62 billion spent on buying new frequency.