German operators work on 5G-ready network enhancements

Germany was a hotbed of ‘5G-ready’ announcements last week, including edge computing progress from Deutsche Telekom and a Massive MIMO deployment by Telefónica Deutschland.

The latter said it has worked with Huawei to develop a “5G-ready” antenna which is very compact while supporting LTE-Advanced and future 5G requirements. It features an integrated 14-port multiband antenna and TDD 3.5 GHz Massive MIMO antenna. This integrated design aims to get around the difficulty of deploying Massive MIMO alongside 4×4 in sub-3 GHz spectrum, because of the number of antennas and the space they occupy.

Jaime Lluch, RAN director, said: “We believe that during the future-oriented network evolution of mobile broadband, antenna installation space severely hinders the progress of network deployment. Telefónica Deutschland and Huawei’s 5G-ready antenna deployment solution can address the challenge of insufficient space, while ensuring excellent network performance and capacity.”

Meanwhile, Deutsche Telekom’s start-up incubator hub:raum has initiated a Low Latency Prototyping program, which will provide a testbed for start-ups, mature businesses and universities to explore low latency services supported by edge computing infrastructure in 4G and 5G. Participants can potentially win an equity-free €300,000 investment and other financial support for their pilot projects.

The incubator is particularly targeting companies which are developing 5G applications such as image recognition, telepresence, location and mapping, speech recognition, real time drone control and augmented or virtual reality. The prototyping phase will take place from December to February at DT’s two hubs in Krakow, Poland, and Berlin, Germany.

Tomasz Gerszberg, SVP of operations at DT’s product innovation group, said: “We are an international operator and the solutions that we will develop right away will have the chance to scale to over a dozen European countries and in the USA. It’s a great development platform for any company looking to emphasize their competitiveness on the market.”