LTE & Advanced Communications Technology
LTE & Advanced Communications Technology
Long-Term Evolution (LTE) is defined and marketed as a 4G LTE network. Usually it is a wireless communication that supports high speed data for data terminals and mobile phones. Technologists consider LTE to be the successor of the current 3G network technology that is based on WCDMA, HSDPA, HSPA and HSUPA. While UMTS replaced the GSM network, LTE is just an update to the existing UMTS network technology in order to provide faster rates of up to 15Mbps in downloading and uploading. LTE has been deployed by various organizations worldwide. For instance, in the United States, T-Mobile USA and Sprint have used LTE. In fact, Sprint is replacing their WiMAX network with LTE. The following paper will discuss the major performance advantages that LTE offers over 3G networks, including the aspects of radio planning. The paper will also highlight the features that enable an efficient LTE radio network to be planned. This work will also highlight the main considerations when deploying LTE as part of a wider multi radio access technology operation.
Performance advantages of LTE over 3G networks
We know that LTE is a 4G standard network defined by Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP). Usually, it is composed of two major elements which include, radio access network and evolutionary core network architecture known as Service Architecture Evolution (SAE). The radio access network is optimized for all traffic networks that are IP-based. LTE promises an improvement in operational efficiencies and network performance. Considering the fact that it is an all-IP based network, operators can reduce the number of network elements between the internet and the subscribers.
LTE allows carriers, such as AT & T allocate spectrum and take advantage of the improved propagation features it offers. LTE also targets to support high-performing applications of multimedia and increase the capacity of network. Three principal benefits for LTE subscribers include higher speeds and provision of full mobile broadband. This means that the subscribers can run services and applications that are today related to wire-line broadband networks. Another benefit is improved coverage as well as service offerings. In this regard, the LTE technology is offered in 700 MHZ spectrum which proves to have improved coverage and penetration. Subscribers also enjoy improved data connectivity with using LTE. This connectivity peripheral enhances the ability of the customer to connect to a wide variety of devices to the mobile broadband network.
Unlike the 3G networks, LTE promises an improvement in operational efficiencies and network performance. More specifically, it targets to reduce latency and provide a spectral efficiency which is more improved and higher or faster rates. Achievement of higher data rates in both uplink and downlink causes a high throughput. The capabilities of high throughput offer a robust radio performance both at the cell site and cell edge. The wireless network technology has a low latency such that the time required to connect to it is within a few hundred milliseconds. In simpler terms, the low latency and improved spectrum efficiency offered by LTE allows users to use more applications on mobile devices. In addition, customers are able to share large files and stream media at a higher speed than that of the 3G network.
Features That Enable an Efficient LTE Network to Be Planned
Radio network planning is considered as a vital step for a wireless technology. The planning process consists of four main phases. The first phase is site survey which entails the collection of information that will be used in the calculations of the Coverage and capacity planning. Next is the frequency and spectrum planning in which values of various parameters will be chosen to enable the processing of the calculations. The third phase is the link budget and coverage planning followed by the capacity planning. The last two steps entail model tuning, defining thresholds and creating an efficient radio plan from the thresholds.
Usually the radio network planning process developed for the purpose of maximizing network coverage as well as providing the capacity desired. Planning a radio g depends on the features of the communication technology. The major features that enable the planning of the LTE radio network are higher bandwidth options and improved spectrum efficiency. The higher bandwidth offered by LTE enables a higher speed of transferring data. On the other hand, the LTE spectrum efficiency increases the overall network capacity. When deploying LTE as a multi radio access technology operation, one must ensure that the speed of data transfer is high and the spectrum is efficient. In this regard, it is important to consider bandwidth options, latency as well as the spectrum efficiency prior to deploying LTE as a Multi-RAT technology operation.
It is with no doubt that LTE is the most efficient and appropriate technology to replace the current 3G wireless networks. Most of the features of the LTE have proved to be beneficial for users including business and telecommunication organizations worldwide. Major advantages of using the LTE technology include higher rates of sending files, downloading and uploading. Others include faster response times from the network and increased network capacity.