750Mbps download speed achieved on EE’s live network at Wembley Stadium test-bed
Written by: Sam Fenwick | Published:

Qualcomm Technologies, EE and Sony Mobile demonstrated live speeds of 750Mbps (download) and 110Mbps (upload) during an event at EE’s Wembley Stadium showcase site held on 5 July.

These speeds were achieved at an event that demonstrated the use of LTE Advanced features including 4x4 MIMO, 3xCA (Three Carrier Aggregation) and 256-QAM higher order modulation on EE’s live network in conjunction with Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium smartphone, for four use-cases:

  • • Streaming 4K HDR10 content from Amazon Prime
  • • Speed improvements for downloading large files via Google Drive
  • • Download of music/video files for offline use
  • • A network simulation showcasing the network-wide benefits of deploying Gigabit LTE.

The companies claim that the event showcased “Europe’s first commercial Gigabit LTE/4G mobile device and network” and that the speeds shown are more than twice as fast as the UK’s fastest commercial fibre broadband offering. Gigabit LTE refers to the technology that allows 1Gbps download speeds under ideal conditions.

EE has switched on the latest upgrades to its 4G network in Cardiff and London’s Tech City, and will be rolling out to more major cities throughout 2017 and 2018. Real world speeds of 428Mbps were demonstrated in Cardiff City Centre to mark the launch of the Xperia XZ Premium smartphone.

EE was the first network in the UK to support ‘Cat 9’ mobile devices, in September 2016, and claims that it is the first to support ‘Cat 16’ mobile devices with Gigabit LTE.

Powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 Mobile Platform, Sony claims that the XZ Premium is the first smartphone to feature a 4K HDR display. According to testing performed by Strategy Analytics, it has achieved maximum download rates just below 1,000Mbps, enabled by the Snapdragon X16 LTE modem integrated into the Snapdragon 835 Mobile Platform. This allows smartphone users to stream and watch high-quality 4K HDR resolution content on their mobile for the first time. Select Amazon Original Series via Amazon Prime Video in 4K HDR are available to stream now, with more 4K HDR content coming soon.

Roberto Di Pietro, vice president business development, Qualcomm Europe Inc, says, “We are proud to support the development of commercial Gigabit LTE in Europe in conjunction with EE and Sony Mobile, enabled by the Snapdragon 835 Mobile Platform. Gigabit LTE is not simply about headline data download speeds, it’s about bringing real-life benefits to the everyday user, regardless of the device they are using right now and forms the first major step towards 5G. It is exciting to see the culmination of all these technologies coming to life in Europe, as the first commercial devices capable of delivering this incredible user experience start to enter the industry.”

Tom Bennett, director of network services and devices at EE, said: “Peak speeds get all the headlines, and their importance is simple: the higher the peak speed on our network, the better the average speed for every customer. And better average throughput means customers are doing more and getting their content more quickly and more consistently – and that means they’re happier. We will keep investing to stay at the cutting edge of network and device technology so that our customers keep getting the best possible network experience. Working with the best technology companies across the mobile industry is vital to that.”

Warren Saunders, country head – UK & Ireland at Sony Mobile Communications, said, “Our customers are increasingly demanding more from their Xperia smartphones; faster connections, 4K quality content, sharper camera shots, and more. To meet their expectations, it’s essential our devices have the processing and performance power to provide quality mobile experiences. The XZ Premium is the first smartphone with a 4K HDR screen, and with Gigabit LTE we have the speed to allow seamless streaming of 4K content, or download large files for offline viewing.”

Ben Wood, Chief of Research, CCS Insight, said “The insatiable desire for ever faster mobile speeds and increased network capacity is a driving force for technologies such as gigabit LTE. It’s exciting to see the technology being deployed in the UK providing a clear stepping stone towards 5G technology”


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