MTS and Ericsson unveil prelim results of Massive MIMO deployment at World Cup and conduct a 5G Esport demo

Fans go crazy for video upload at football tournament in Russia.

MTS and Ericsson announced preliminary results of Europe’s largest deployment of Massive MIMO (Multiple Input, Multiple Output) in seven cities staging the World Cup 2018 in Russia. Mobile internet traffic volume almost tripled during the tournament, while the uplink for video streaming from the sporting events increased by up to five times as a result of implementation of 5G technologies on the MTS network.

By the launch of World Cup 2018, MTS deployed Massive MIMO in the LTE-TDD 2600 MHz band in seven of the 11 tournament cities – Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara and Rostov-on-Don, increasing network capacity around the stadiums, in fan zones, airports, railway stations, and recreation areas. We also built a telecommunications infrastructure in Luzhniki stadium in Moscow and the Rostov Arena stadium and provided access to other telecom operators. MTS also carried out large-scale works aimed at building and expanding the network capacity at all other stadiums staging the matches.

During the tournament, Ericsson Massive MIMO base stations on the MTS network measured an increase in uplink data throughput of up to 5 times, allowing football fans to stream high quality video content directly from their smartphones during the matches. Downlink speed and spectrum efficiency doubled, while network capacity increased four-fold.

Andrei Ushatsky, Vice President, technology and IT, MTS, commemted, "According to our data, at football games where Russia are playing, the fans generate substantially increased Internet traffic during the match, exceeding the average daily usage by at least 2.5-3 times. The extensive preparation of our network and the introduction of Ericsson’s 5G solutions for the World Cup have clearly paid off, allowing MTS to successfully handle the overload and provide high-quality communication services to tens of thousands of our subscribers. High-speed mobile internet makes football fans more engaged as they can instantly share the most spectacular and exciting moments with others. Indeed, we found that during some matches uplink exceeded downlink, clearly showing that our customers preferred uploading photos and videos on social networks, streaming games and sharing content in messengers than watching video or surfing the Internet.”

5G Esports demo.

Today, in GUM shopping mall in Moscow, MTS and Ericsson arranged an Esport demo taking advantage of the latest 5G technology. Journalists and cybersport fans had the opportunity to experience an Esports game Assetto Corsa on two gaming VR-stations connected via Ericsson base station and mobile terminal in the 28 GHz band, testing the 5G network potential for advanced cybersport applications. The minimum latency between end devices was 4 milliseconds, at least five times less than in LTE networks.

The 5G trials are a part of our strategic partnership with Ericsson on cooperation in the development and implementation of 5G in Russia, signed in December 2015.

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