Vodafone is implementing LTE FDD/TDD carrier aggregation in commercial network in Portugal, anticipating wider terminal availability later this year. This move will allow the operator to combine the best characteristics of LTE FDD and TDD modes.
Adding TDD to the already installed FDD network significantly enhances the total downlink data capacity and improves subscribers' mobile broadband experience. In addition, FDD/TDD carrier aggregation extends the app coverage of the TDD layer by up to 230 percent.
Greater capacity and coverage will be needed in the short term as mobile traffic demand is expected to grow nine times by 2020, according to Ericsson Mobility Report projections (June, 2015). With wider device support expected later this year, implementing converged carrier aggregation technology in live networks now means the operator will be able to hit the ground running when handsets are available.
Using only a software update to Ericsson baseband hardware already operating in the network, Ericsson's Networks Software 15B release enables simultaneous operation of LTE FDD and TDD.
Vodafone's current deployment for the trial in its commercial network in Portugal uses 15 MHz of band 3 (FDD 1800) and 20 MHz of band 38 (TDD 2600) and tests are supported by the Qualcomm® Snapdragon(TM) 810 processor with X10 LTE running in a device. The Snapdragon 810 processor with X10 LTE is a product of Qualcomm Technologies.