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Super 3G trial gets go-ahead

NTT DoCoMo tests superfast mobile phone tech

NTT DoCoMo has embarked on a month-long experiment of a Super 3G (third-generation) mobile network system.

The indoor experiment will test data transmission speed and NTT DoCoMo hopes to hit a downlink speed of 300Mbps, it said today. First trails will involve the use of a single antenna on both the transmitter and receiver and then the use of up to four multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) antennas.

The tests will also look at the speed with which communications can be handed from one base station to another.

Super 3G, which is also known by the acronym LTE (long-term evolution), uses the same radio spectrum band as current 3G services, but that's one of the few similarities. Super 3G allows for a number of different bandwidth channels and uses different modulation systems to transmit the data. It is envisaged to eventually allow data links at 80Mbps to the network and 300M bps from the network.

The company, which is Japan's largest cellular carrier, has been working on Super 3G for some time and anticipates introducing the technology in Japan sometime around 2009 as a stepping stone between current so-called 3.5G technology and future 4G (fourth-generation) systems.

NTT DoCoMo has also been aggressively pursuing 4G system development. In experiments conducted in late December last year the carrier came close to hitting a 5Gbps data transmission speed from an experimental 4G system to a receiver moving at 10 kilometres per hour.

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