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Samsung Achieves Industry First: Expands Virtualized RAN Capability to Support C-Band Massive MIMO Radio

(see original release here)

June 8, 2021

In additional milestone, Samsung’s Virtualized solution reaches the maximum 5G speeds on C-Band spectrum

Samsung Electronics today announced that its commercial 5G virtualized RAN(vRAN) now supports its latest C-Band Massive MIMO radios, a first for the industry and a key milestone in virtualization technology. Additionally, the company achieved a top 5G vRAN speed exceeding 1.5Gbps on C-Band spectrum. With these results – performed in a demonstration at Samsung’s lab in Korea – the company continues to expand the limits of vRAN performance from low-band support last year to mid-band today. Samsung is also currently conducting field trials using these products, and plans to commercialize the solution this year.

The demonstration leveraged E-UTRAN New Radio Dual Connectivity (EN-DC) technology combining 40MHz of 4G frequency and 100MHz of 5G frequency on the C-Band spectrum. Through the dual connectivity approach, Samsung achieved 2.25Gbps overall on a single user device. For the demonstration, Samsung used its latest virtualized RAN, C-Band 64T64R Massive MIMO radio, and cloud-native 5G Core. Samsung’s vRAN, which is already in use providing services on low-band spectrum in the U.S., proved its capability to support Massive MIMO radios through this achievement.

Samsung vRAN expands its capability to support Massive MIMO Radio

“By combining our true vRAN solution and powerful C-Band 64T64R Massive MIMO radio for the first time in the industry, Samsung achieved a significant breakthrough, increasing the throughput ten-fold, improving user experience and showing our leadership in virtualized technology,” said Junehee Lee, Executive Vice President and Head of R&D, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “This milestone is a result of Samsung’s ongoing efforts in 5G innovation, backed by global commercialization experience, and we aim to continue driving R&D efforts to help mobile operators deliver pioneering solutions.”

Samsung’s vRAN solution enables mobile operators to bring greater flexibility, scalability, and resource efficiency in network management with various spectrums in Time Division Duplex(TDD) and Frequency Division Duplex(FDD). Today’s solution is significant as it demonstrates how the company’s vRAN delivers performance parity with traditional hardware-based equipment, while covering spectrum from low-band to mid-band, and supporting both outdoor and indoor radio solutions for both carrier and private networks.

“Operators consistently tell us that RAN virtualization is a priority as they look to accelerate their 5G network and service deployments,” said Peter Jarich, Head of GSMA Intelligence. “Samsung’s latest demonstrations will be well-received, signaling that 5G vRAN is a viable option, achieving performance on par with purpose-built hardware.”

Samsung recently announced its complete C-Band solutions portfolio, including macro and micro radios, indoor solutions, network optimization tools as well as C-Band Massive MIMO radio which has already been commercially shipped to the U.S. The company’s 5G vRAN solution was rolled out last year, delivering the industry’s first wide-scale commercialization of a fully virtualized 5G network solution.

Samsung has pioneered the successful delivery of 5G end-to-end solutions including chipsets, radios, and core. Through ongoing research and development, Samsung drives the industry to advance 5G networks with its market-leading product portfolio from fully virtualized RAN and Core to private network solutions and AI-powered automation tools. The company is currently providing network solutions to mobile operators that deliver connectivity to hundreds of millions of users around the world.

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