Singapore’s third-ranked cellco MobileOne (M1) plans to launch a two-month LTE trial next month, using Nokia Siemens Networks radio and core network equipment.
The operator said it expects “to achieve up to a 35% reduction of its telecommunications networks carbon footprint by early 2011” as a result of the upgrade, which will deploy NSN’s Flexi multiradio base stations.
As part of the LTE trial, M1 will be showcasing LTE services, including HDTV streaming, at its flagship store in Paragon on Orchard Road.
Patrick Scodeller, CTO at M1, said: “Our network modernization contract with Nokia Siemens Networks represents our first steps in our evolution to LTE.”
Ricky Corker, head of the Asia Pacific region at NSN, believes that M1 is now “well positioned to gain a competitive edge in [Singapore].”
The deal could pave the way for M1 to begin commercial LTE services possibly as early as late-2010.
“We have not made a decision on that [commercial launch date] yet,” M1 spokesperson Chua Swee Kiat told telecomasia.net. “We are doing a trial first to see how it goes.”
In November last year, rival SingTel announced plans to conduct LTE trials in the first half of 2010 through its affiliates in Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore.
Ericsson will supply gear for the Singapore trial, Alcatel-Lucent and ZTE are contracted to the Globe trial in the Philippines. Other trials will also involve Huawei, NEC and NSN.
“LTE base stations and core network equipment will be installed for detailed field tests that will evaluate the features and end-to-end performance of the technology, which promises a peak speed of 340 Mbps,” SingTel said in November.
No. 2 cellco StarHub has yet to announce LTE trials. It launched 21 Mbps HSPA+ services in mid-July and is planning to upgrade the service to 42Mbps in 2010.
It reportedly may not roll out commercial LTE services until 2012 or 2013.