Den Haag,

T-Mobile Netherlands takes next step towards 5G network with new TD-LTE technology

T-Mobile is the first provider to introduce the new TD-LTE network technology for even more capacity and increases speeds in its existing 4.5G network by up to thirty percent

The Hague - T-Mobile is laying the foundations for its future 5G network by being the first carrier in Europe to make new TD-LTE network technology available on a large scale. For T-Mobile customers in the Netherlands this means that their connection will be even faster and more stable and, above all, that they will be able to download more data and stream online media.

A fourth frequency band is being added to the T-Mobile network in the Netherlands on the 2600MHz frequency. This will considerably increase the capacity of T-Mobile's mobile network because, thanks to this technology, customers will have up to an extra 120Mbps of bandwidth at their disposal, on top of the existing volume. The fourth band makes use of the special TD-LTE technology. Recently T-Mobile completed the nationwide roll-out of 4G on the third frequency band (4G on 2100Mhz) and is now taking the next, major step in the development of the best mobile network in the world.

Extra boost of existing 4G network

In addition to activating the extra frequency on 2600Mhz. on the basis of TD-LTE, T-Mobile is giving its existing 4G network a boost that provides all T-Mobile customers in the Netherlands with an increase in speed of up to 30 percent. By applying 256 QAM technology on the 900, 1800 and 2100 bands the network facilitates the smart sending of more data over the same connection. This means that every antenna is able to handle a throughput speed of up to 450 Mbps.

"T-Mobile has the best tested network of the Netherlands for the second year in a row and our aim is to ensure the unlimited use of this network. So we have an honor as well as a promise to uphold and we are making sure we do so by introducing the first TD-LTE network in Europe and by boosting our existing 4G network", says Rachid El Hattachi, Technology Director of T-Mobile Netherlands. "The online behavior of consumers is changing rapidly. The fact that we are continually developing our network means they have the freedom to download large volumes of data fast and stable. The result is that our customers can enjoy their favorite online media wherever and whenever they want."

Extra capacity for high download speed

During the renovation of the entire mobile network over the last couple years, T-Mobile physically prepared virtually all of the masts for the rollout of TD-LTE on the 2600MHz band. The antennas in the busiest, most densely populated areas will be activated first. By the end of 2017 a large proportion of the T-Mobile network has to actively support the new band. Most new smartphones, including European iPhones (such as the 6), now support both the 4G TD-LTE technology and the FDD-LTE technology, which T-Mobile uses for its existing 4G network.

"In the case of the TD-LTE technology the main emphasis is on the downloading as opposed to the uploading of data, in contrast to FDD-LTE where the download and upload frequency bandwidths are the same", Richard Marijs, Technology Strategist of T-Mobile Netherlands, explains. "The TD-LTE technology, which is already being used on a large scale in Asia, uses the same channel for both sending and receiving, which is also the case for Wi-Fi. This results in proportionally more download capacity than upload capacity, which is great for watching videos. The technology is especially applicable for customers who do not move around at great speeds, for instance in the car or on the train. In those cases a stable uplink is particularly important, especially when making calls. That is why the European and American mobile networks have traditionally all been based on the FDD technology with a separate up-link and down-link channel. Customers who move around fast are mainly connected to our 4G FDD-LTE network. And even then it is still possible to use TD-LTE for extra capacity when it’s combined with the other three frequency bands (carrier aggregation). In that case the uplink continues to run via the regular 4.5G FDD network.This is how we optimally and dynamically divide the capacity need. We are, as it were, creating extra lanes for 4.5G traffic."