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Ukkoverkot, a mobile service provider in Finland, and Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider announced that they have signed a contract to deploy the world’s first commercial LTE 450MHz network on the LTE 450MHz Global event in Amsterdam.
Under the terms of the agreement, Huawei will provide an end-to-end network solution, including base stations and devices, to ensure the smooth migration from CDMA 450MHz to LTE 450MHz for Ukkoverkot network customers in Finland. This is the first time a commercial LTE 450MHz has been deployed anywhere in the world. Ukkoverkot aims to provide nationwide coverage of LTE 450MHz by the end of 2014, and to offer the fastest speed LTE services in Finland.
A number of mobile operators are currently facing frequency resource shortage challenges. To address this challenge, Ukkoverkot will now offer 450MHz as a new LTE band in Finland.
“Ukkoverkot is clearly in challenger position in the Finnish mobile market landscape, especially from a frequency resources point of view. Deploying disruptive technology like LTE 450MHz is a good technology strategy. It gives us high capacity and new value for the 450MHz band in mobile data use. In addition, the coverage properties are truly impressive, with countrywide network across the whole of Finland (~340 000 km²) successfully achieved with only few hundred sites,” said, Antti Pellinen, CEO, Ukkoverkot.
One 450MHz base station can cover twice the footprint of an 800MHz base station and up to 20 times the footprint of a single 2.6GHz node. This reduces network investment dramatically and shortens service launch time, making LTE 450MHz the best choice for universal wireless broadband.
As a strategic partner of Ukkoverkot, Huawei also reuses legacy network resources like base stations, sites, power supplies and antennas, which help to further decrease the network development investments.
When the network upgrade is finished, the new 450MHz Ukkoverkot LTE network will be the world’s first nationwide LTE network of its kind, and offer by far the largest mobile broadband coverage in Finland. Ukkoverkot is focused on providing mobile data communication services for demanding customer segments like businesses, field and home workers, authorities and transportation industry. Ukkoverkot does not offer speech or SMS services for its customers.
Zou Yong, Vice President of Huawei LTE Wireless Network, said, “Huawei continues to contribute to the industry development of LTE 450MHz standards. For instance, in 2013, Huawei, together with industry partners, made 450MHz the standard of the 3GPP LTE band and established the LTE 450MHz Industry Alliance. We recently unveiled the LTE 450MHz chipset that is available on customer-premises equipment and MiFi devices. The partnership with Ukkoverkot to deploy LTE 450MHz is another important step and, we look forward to cooperating with many more operators to deploy LTE 450MHz commercial networks and bring universal broadband to more people and ubiquitous connection for M2M or things to things.”
By the end of the first quarter of 2014, Huawei won more than 290 LTE network contracts and enabled commercial LTE networks for more than 126 operators worldwide.