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Ericsson launches ‘ultra-light’ 20kg Massive MIMO radio for mid-band 5G

Ericsson massive MIMO radio.
(Image credit: Ericsson.)

Ericsson has released three new radios in its massive MIMO portfolio, whilst also expanding its RAN Compute portfolio with six new products to enable 5G mid-band rollouts. 

Mid-band spectrum offers a balanced combination of capacity and coverage. And following the controversial completion of the FCC’s ‘Auction 105’ for mid-band spectrum in the US, the market for Ericsson’s new devices is increasing at pace, with many operators looking to leverage this spectrum to complement their existing high- and low-band deployments. 

“With our new portfolio, communications service providers can speed up their mid-band deployments efficiently with superior performance."

Per Narvinger, Ericsson.

“After the first rollouts of 5G networks, now is the time to scale up 5G by leveraging Massive MIMO to a much larger extent,” said Per Narvinger, head of product area networks at Ericsson. “With our new portfolio, communications service providers can speed up their mid-band deployments efficiently with superior performance for their users, while reducing energy consumption.”

Following the FCC's 'Auction 105'

C-band spectrum consists of 500 Mhz between 3.7-4.2 GHz, which is critical for enabling innovative 5G use cases such as connected factories, smart cities and 5G drones. And Ericsson’s new line of lightweight, mid-band Massive MIMO 5G radios weigh just 20kg, are up to 45 percent lighter than the previous generation, and 20 percent more energy efficient. According to Ericsson, these radios can be deployed from “urban high-rise buildings to suburban and rural capacity areas”.

“This portfolio launch comes at an opportune moment, as carriers turn their attention to capitalizing on mid-band 5G spectrum."

Ed Gubbins, GlobalData.

“This portfolio launch comes at an opportune moment, as carriers turn their attention to capitalizing on mid-band 5G spectrum,” said Ed Gubbins, principal analyst at GlobalData. “Ericsson’s Massive MIMO radios are an industry standout in terms of compact form factors and lightweight designs, which should help operators overcome deployment challenges. In addition, the stability and strength of Ericsson's custom silicon strategy also sets them apart.”

Ericsson has also advanced its RAN Compute portfolio with six new products. These include both indoor and outdoor options for 4G expansions and mid-band 5G rollouts, with up to 50 percent higher throughput and 15 to 20 percent lower energy consumption.

Dan Oliver

Dan is a British journalist with 20 years of experience in the design and tech sectors, producing content for the likes of Microsoft, Adobe, Dell and The Sunday Times. In 2012 he helped launch the world's number one design blog, Creative Bloq. Dan is now editor-in-chief at 5Gradar, where he oversees news, insight and reviews, providing an invaluable resource for anyone looking to stay up-to-date with the key issues facing 5G.