ZTE makes prototype smartphone call on China Unicom’s trial 5G network vs Huawei’s 5G NR @ 2.6GHz?

ZTE, which recently completed the 3rd phase of CMIIT IMT-2020 5G core network tests, just  announced it made the a 5G mobile call using its 5G prototype smartphone on the Guangdong branch of China Unicom’s trial 5G network in Shenzhen, China.  The trial was conducted in collaboration with China Unicom and involved placing a 3GPP Release 15 compliant New Radio (NR) non-standalone (NSA) mobile call using the prototype smartphone.  It used ZTE’s 5G end-to-end solution, including radio access network, core network, transport network and prototype device.   In addition to demonstrating a 5G call, the test verified key 5G technologies including Massive MIMO, 5G NR, non-standalone (NSA) dual connectivity, FlexE transport technology and 5G common core architecture (defined by who?).

 ZTE says “the future 5G system should be a unified network adaptable to different scenarios.”


“ZTE’s 5G solution has passed the end-to-end test in the three months after the release of the 3GPP Rel-15,” ZTE said in a statement.  “It showcases ZTE’s strong competency in 5G R&D and commercialization, demonstrating ZTE’s role as a reliable partner to global 5G operators and a key player in the 5G industry.”

Last year, ZTE announced a series of new-generation 5G base stations. The Chinese telecom and mobile phone vendor said that the new generation of 5G high/low frequency Active Antenna Unit (AAU) base stations support 3GPP release 15 “5G NR” NSA specification for the data plane.  The latest ZTE base stations combine the radio and antenna parts.  It is capable of integrating multiple frequency bands, which create what is known as the “AAU solution.” AAU supports 5G functions such as Massive MIMO and Beamforming.

Meanwhile, Huawei says it completed a 5G New Radio (NR) trial in the 2.6 GHz spectrum band.  Huawei said 2.6 GHz is one of the “excellent choices for operators to deploy 5G NSA/SA commercial network.”  The company noted that 2.6 GHz is an “abundant spectrum resource around the world, but not fully used in many areas.”  Huawei’s tests in the 2.6 GHz band follows earlier trials in the 3.5 GHz and 4.9 GHz bands.

The two Chinese telecom vendors are vying to take the lead in 5G testing under the jurisdiction of China’s IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group, which was established in 2013 as China’s platform to promote 5G research in that country. The 5G R&D trial established three separate phases for verifying a 5G solution: key technologies, technical solutions, and system networking.






3 thoughts on “ZTE makes prototype smartphone call on China Unicom’s trial 5G network vs Huawei’s 5G NR @ 2.6GHz?

  1. China Mobile, ZTE complete 2.6-GHz 5G NR trial

    ZTE and the Guangdong branch of China Mobile have completed a field trial of 2.6-GHz 5G new radio equipment during a test in Guangzhou.

    The field trial involved the use of ZTE’s full series of end-to-end 5G solutions, including base stations, core networks and end-user devices. During the trial, the companies achieved a single user downlink peak rate of 1.8Gbps and a transmission distance of up to 3km using 100MHz of bandwidth on the 2.6-GHz 5G candidate band. ZTE and China Mobile initiated the Guangdong 5G field trial in 2017 as part of the operator’s preparations for 5G. The operators also successfully completed the first 2.6-GHz new radio interoperability and development testing (IODT) trial in December.
    The two companies meanwhile jointly developed Pre5G Massive MIMO technology at the China Mobile 5G Joint Innovation Center as part of a collaboration which commenced in 2016.

  2. SWAN Mobile, ZTE hit Slovakian milestone with first 5G video call
    SOURCE: ZTE Friday 12 July 19

    ZTE Corporation, a major international provider of telecommunications, enterprise, and consumer technology solutions for the Mobile Internet, and Slovakian Mobile Operator SWAN Mobile have jointly conducted the country’s first 5G video call in a major breakthrough for 5G commercialization. SWAN Mobile and ZTE showcased a variety of industry applications based on 5G in front of reporters and invited guests.

    The demos were run on a 5G network based on 3GPP R15, using ZTE’s 5G end-to-end solution which consists of wireless access and core network technologies, as well as 5G mobile phones. During the demo, SWAN Mobile’s CTO, Patrik Kollaroci, used ZTE’s latest AXON 10 Pro 5G flagship phone to conduct the first 5G video call in the country. In addition to the 5G video calls, visitors could also experience live demos of 5G peak rates, eight-channel HD video streaming, VR video and drone services. Tested with 60M bandwidth, the peak data rate of 5G single user reached up to 1Gbps, equaling the theoretical value. HD videos were uploaded over 5G networks in real-time by a 360-degree camera drone and downloaded by VR glasses. The result was a clear, smooth multi-channel live video experience, with the demonstrations showcasing the strong performance of the 5G network, featuring high speed and low latency.

    “With the issuing of 5G licenses, the 5G era has now arrived in Slovakia. We hope to cooperate with ZTE to provide leading 5G applications and services to Slovakian users as soon as possible,” said Roman Vavrik, CEO of SWAN. ZTE is committed to creating the ultimate experience with simple and intelligent wireless networks for operators in the 5G era, alongside mature end-to-end technology.

    To date, with the world’s first 5G commercial deployment of scale, ZTE has won 25 5G commercial contracts around the world, covering China, Europe, Asia-Pacific, MEA and other major 5G markets, and has cooperated with more than 60 operators around the world. SWAN Mobile and ZTE officially signed its 5G commercial contract on May 31st, 2019.

  3. ZTE has suggested it has spent roughly $900 million on R&D for the first six months of 2019, a 14.5% ratio of the total revenues for the period. This is an increase from the 12.8% share of the same period of 2018, with the new figure just ahead of the 13.8% share of revenues (estimate) Huawei allocated to R&D last year. The domestic rival has promised to increase this figure by 15-20% for 2019, though the overall percentage will not be known until the full year financial figures are known.

    In comparison, Ericsson said it attributed 18.5% of net sales revenue to R&D over the course of 2018, a figure which increased to 18.7% by the end of the first six months of 2019. At Nokia, 18.4% of net sales revenues were directed towards the R&D department for the first six months of this year.

    This part of the business has largely been focusing on the development of basic operating systems, distributed databases and core chipsets most recently. The company has completed the design and mass production of the 7nm chipsets, while it is currently undergoing the R&D phase for 5nm chipsets.

    All this work has resulted in 3,700 5G patents being granted to the firm, though this number might notably increase in the near future. ZTE has also said it is partnering with various Chinese universities to source 5,000 new employees to bolster the R&D ranks. Once again, these are numbers which are being cast into the public domain to enhance the reputation of the business at a time where vendors are facing scrutiny at an unprecedented level.

    Opened in Nanjing, Rome and Brussels, the cybersecurity centres will allow potential customers to test and validate the security credentials of the firm prior to installing any equipment or software in the network. Some will not be convinced this is a fool-proof way to ensure resilience, though it is an act of transparency which the industry and governments have been crying out for.

    The result of this work is 60 memorandums of understanding (MoU) with telcos around the world, 50 5G demonstrations in 20 industry verticals, 300 strategic collaborations and 200 5G products to date.

    It is often easy to overlook ZTE and designate the firm as a poor man’s version of 5G network infrastructure, but the numbers justify inclusion at the top table. The challenge which ZTE now faces it making prominent strides into Western markets, the very ones which are getting twitchy over security and price today.


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