SKT, Ericsson push for faster wireless technology in South Korea.

SK Telecom, South Korea’s largest mobile carrier, plans to commercialize smart antenna technology it has developed that offers an uploading speed four times faster than existing long-term evolution (LTE) wireless services.

The move comes amid growing demands for faster uplink technology as the speed of uploading mobile files has failed to catch up with that of downloading.

“While downloading technology has steadily developed, few investments have been made to increase the speed of data uploading,” said an SK Telecom spokesman, Thursday. “LTE has developed into tri-band LTE-Advanced which guarantees four times faster downloading service than the existing LTE service, but there has been no development in uploading technology.”

The company said it has demonstrated the “Uplink MU-MIMO” technology with Ericsson at its research and development (R&D) center in Beijing. An average of 40 percent faster speed has been confirmed during the demonstration, it added.

The Multiple-Input-Multiple-Output (MIMO) is a state-of-the-art antenna technology that helps transmit multiple data streams to multiple receivers. Above all, Massive-MIMO, which uses hundreds of antennas to raise the downloading speed up to 1,000 times, is regarded as the core technology for the fifth-generation (5G) wireless system.

Both companies agreed to upgrade the wireless communication standards through MIMO amid the surging demands for wireless data usage by smartphones, tablets or other mobile devices.

SK Telecom said the technology is expected to be commercialized no later than late next year.

“More people are using mobile uploading services to share their photos and videos in real-time. The MIMO demonstration is meaningful as it has established a foundation to activate individual-centered mobile services,” the spokesman said.

Ericsson-LG CEO Martin Wiktorin said, “Users will be able to experience faster uploading speed through advanced antenna technology, and we will do our utmost to commercialize advanced technologies through continued technical cooperation with SK Telecom.”

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