LTE spectrum fragmentation can be easily resolved, says NTT DoCoMo exec

The head of the companys R&D strategy division says using existing 3G bands for LTE and more multiband devices is the cure

Mobile operators should use their current frequency bands for 4G services to avoid spectrum fragmentation, a problem that has plagued Apple and other manufactures as they launch their devices globally, an executive at NTT DoCoMo said Tuesday.

Seizo Onoe, head of DoCoMo's R&D strategy division, said the solution is to use existing 3G bands for next-generation services like LTE (Long Term Evolution), a specification for high-speed networks that is emerging as the global standard. He also called on component makers to put more effort into multiband support.

"We don't need to cry over LTE spectrum fragmentation," he said, speaking at the Computex exhibition in Taiwan.

The problem of LTE and other services running on different frequencies in different regions has been a major headache for device makers like Apple. The company stopped promoting its new iPad as compatible with 4G networks in Australia after a local consumer commission filed a complaint with the federal court in March.

Australian operator Telstra runs its 4G service in the 1800 megahertz (MHz) band, while Apple's newest iPad can connect only on 700 MHz and 2100MHz LTE bands, which are used in the U.S. and Canada.

Onoe said DoCoMo, which launched its LTE service in December 2010, now has nearly 3 million subscribers and aims for coverage of 98 percent of Japan's population by March 2015.

He said the company is also actively preparing to implement LTE Advanced, an enhanced version of LTE, and is testing the technology in some parts of Japan. He said DoCoMo has achieved rates of 1 Gbp for downloads and 200 Mbp on uploads, though real-world implementations will be slower.

DoCoMo is leaning toward using an implementation that combines macro towers and small cells to provide service, an approach that provides broad reach and maintains local connectivity, Onoe said.

The company runs Japan's largest mobile operator, with just under half of the country's mobile subscribers. The company has the best coverage and strongest network, but has lost users in recent years to smaller rivals such as Softbank, the first domestic carrier to offer the iPhone.

Computex, one of Asia's largest consumer electronics and component shows, runs this week in Taipei.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jay Alabaster

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Cate Bacon

Aruba Instant On AP11D

The strength of the Aruba Instant On AP11D is that the design and feature set support the modern, flexible, and mobile way of working.

Dr Prabigya Shiwakoti

Aruba Instant On AP11D

Aruba backs the AP11D up with a two-year warranty and 24/7 phone support.

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?