Could the TD-LTE eco-system match or even outpace that of FDD? Pen San Tang, founding director of Packet One and on the GTI Steering Committee, certainly think so. To hear more from Tang come to hear him speak in the TD-LTE track on Day One of the 9th annual LTE Asia conference, taking place on the 23rd-25th September 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
How is P1 progressing with the launch of LTE-based services?
P1 is in the midst of completing a strategic investment agreement and joint collaboration between Malaysia’s leading broadband player, Telekom Malaysia Berhad and its existing stakeholders; founder Green Packet Berhad and South Korea’s SK Telecom for the rollout of LTE. The transaction is anticipated to be completed by Q3, and the teams have come together to do extensive planning.
What is your strategy to move from WiMAX to TD-LTE?
P1’s WiMAX network will continue to provide broadband services to customers as a parallel LTE network is built out. Once WiMAX customers have migrated out over a number of years, P1 expects to use the 2.3Ghz spectrum as an additional capacity band to meet the growing data demands of customers. However, the use of the spectrum would be subject to local regulatory approval.
Is your use of TD-LTE based on a technical merit or due to the availability of its spectrum?
Selection is based on technical merit of TD-LTE and also the much stronger eco-system support.
Is this the case? FDD LTE is usually thought of as having the stronger eco-system. How has the TD-LTE eco-system progressed over the last 12 months and what are your expectations for the next couple of years?
2014 has being a defining year for TD-LTE with a huge jump in infrastructure deployments and the proliferation of terminal devices supporting multi-bands and multi-modes. The mobile industry has also accepted TD-LTE as part of the LTE family with many mobile operators deploying Het-Net using both TDD and FDD LTE. In the future, the availability of spectrum bands will determine the actual technology to be used, as the multi-mode, multi-band eco-system will support both FDD-LTE and TDD-LTE.
Could your TD-LTE spectrum open up other opportunities for you such as becoming a wholesale spectrum provider?
In line with regulatory direction to enhance industry competitiveness, P1 is open to exploring further collaboration opportunities for network sharing and the wholesaling of services.
What is the key aspect of the LTE Asia conference you are most looking forward to
As a member of the steering committee of the GTI, I will continue to encourage the convergence of FDD-LTE and TDD-LTE. I am focusing in assisting TDD spectrum holders to find suitable business models that enable them to deploy TD-LTE and be part of the 4G LTE success story. Some of these initiatives are in promoting dual-SIM, dual-radio mobile devices, aligning the WiMAX Standard roadmap with TD-LTE advanced and educating the financial investor community on the hidden values of TDD spectrum assets.