Sprint and Ericsson test advanced radio capabilities with an eye on the upcoming commercial 5G deployment in the US.

At Mobile World Congress Americas, Sprint and Ericsson have unveiled the results of the first U.S. 2.5 GHzMassive MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) field tests using Sprint’s spectrum and Ericsson’s 64T64R (64 transmit, 64 receive) radios. The two companies are preparing for commercial deployment next year, with Massive MIMO radios capable of increasing Sprint’s network capacity up to 10 times.

Nishant Batra, Head of Network Infrastructure, Ericsson says: “Ericsson and Sprint have been partnering on new technologies and continually evolving Sprint’s LTE network, laying the foundation for 5G. Our next-generation 5G-ready TDD 64T64R Massive MIMO radio (AIR6468) will help maximize spectral efficiency of Sprint’s 2.5GHz network. It will also provide a cost-efficient way to support their customers’ growing appetite for increased capacity and high-speed data services. This will be industry’s first live eCPRI installation, which allows for several deployment and performance advantages to operators in the 5G era.”

By 2022, Ericsson expects video applications to drive an eight-fold increase in mobile data traffic. Massive MIMO will be a key technology to enable users to enjoy data-intensive services and advanced features and applications.

Read the full announcement from Sprint here