Continuing on the LTE demo drive theme, Motorola announced today that it is running the world’s first live Time Division Duplex LTE (TD-LTE) network demonstration in Geneva this week at ITU Telecom World. Working with China Mobile, Motorola has set up a TD-LTE network outside the event in a radius of roughly 600-700 meters. Drive time is about 10-15 minutes with LTE coverage, and in-field speeds are hitting 35-40 Mbps. Applications shown during the demo including HD video streaming, GPS navigation, VoIP telephony, video conferencing, and high-speed Web browsing.
Late last week I had a chance to talk with Motorolan Stephane Daeuble to get a little bit of context on the LTE network set-up. For the most part I grilled Stephane on the technical and practical differences between TD-LTE and the more-common Frequency Division Duplex (FDD) LTE. TD-LTE is not as prevalent as the FDD version because it operates on different spectrum frequencies. Many telecom operators already own spectrum that can be converted from GSM or CDMA to FDD-LTE. There are large exceptions, however, with China Mobile being one operator that is moving forward with TD-LTE in the 2.6 GHz frequency band.
There is one other major difference between the two types of LTE. FDD-LTE dictates how bandwidth is allocated between the uplink and the downlink. TD-LTE, on the other hand, allows operators to decide how much bandwidth goes to the uplink versus the downlink. This has interesting implications when you think about using LTE for video broadcasting. In such a scenario, operators could allocate nearly all of the available bandwidth to the downlink, increasing downstream capacity and therefore performance. It’s an interesting application for TD-LTE, and one that other global operators are considering in conjunction with FDD-LTE deployments.
Meanwhile, back at the ITU Telecom show, Motorola also has an is also supporting China Mobile’s LTE-connected booth inside the event. Speeds there (thanks to multiple-antenna technology) are running in the 112-120 Mbps range. Check out the video above for a good look at the TD-LTE experience.