Ericsson ‘revolutionises’ 5G Massive MIMO sector
Written by: Richard Hook | Published:
Female engineer carrying Massive MIMO on rooftop Ericsson's ultra-light AIR3268 will make rooftop installations easier according to the company(credit: Ericsson)

Ericsson has announced the launch of an “ultra-light” 12 kg radio to its ‘Massive MIMO’ portfolio which it claims will “revolutionise” the sector offering easier 5G mid-band deployment.

The AIR3268 antenna-integrated radio has been designed for easier mid-band rollout in partnership with BT and weighs less than the average aeroplane carry-on luggage according to the company.

Ericsson claims that it is the lightest and smallest Massive MIMO radio ever with 200W output power, 32 transceivers and passive cooling. The radio weighs 40% less than its predecessor, which Ericsson said would make installations “easier not only on towers and rooftops, but also on poles and walls”.

BT’s managing director of service platforms Greg McCall said the ultra-light device would reduce wind loading on existing sites and “provide potential for adding 3.5GHz Massive MIMO in new locations”.

In addition Ericsson’s latest radio is “10% more energy-efficient” according to the company, lowering the total added power consumption when introducing 5G on mid-band. The Massive MIMO Deep Sleep mode first used on this device also reportedly consumes 70% less power during low traffic periods, saving 1.2MWh per site/year.

David Hammarwall, head of product line radio at Ericsson, said: “We continue to revolutionize Massive MIMO with ultra-lightweight radios that allow easier site upgrades and more seamless 5G mid-band deployments. AIR 3268 widens the options for the radio site, allowing service providers to boost their networks and deliver faster 5G speeds and response times. It is also energy-efficient, which is important to us and our customers.”

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