ZTE releases 'world's smallest' LTE base station

ZTE showed its intent to corner the LTE market with its commercially available micro basestations.

The telecoms equipment says that its new BS8920 micro base station is the world’s smallest, and is hoping that it will help grab a slice of the market for LTE infrastructure.

ZTE plans to do this by making a smaller, lower power consuming base station that gives hotspot coverage in those hard to reach areas.

The new product will reduce power consumption by 30 percent, with the firm claiming a 100 watt average with its mini base station.

Also the hardware cost will be reduced by 50 percent as the firm cuts the size of its base station, meaning that it will be easier to access LTE, the victor in the 4G wars, in urban area blind spots.

With ZTE currently undertaking trials for LTE it will be hoping that it will steal a march on telecoms rival Huawei, which it has accused of trying to copy its ideas in the past.

ZTE has already signed commercial contracts with the likes of Ericsson and other operators, putting 70 trial networks into place.

And with the LTE market set to grow over the next few years, ZTE needs to do all it can to keep up with Ericsson, Nokia Siemens Networks and Huawei which are currently at the forefront of the market according to Gartner.

According to Gartner analyst Sylvain Fabre it is important for ZTE to look towards competing with the likes of the "more aggressive" Huawei.

"ZTE is gradually getting more of the LTE market as legacy technologies such as GSM shrink, and could be well placed to perform well."

“Though it is a smaller chunk of business for ZTE, LTE is clearly the next step, and companies know that they have to be in the LTE game, as for example the 3G market slows down growth.”

“All the players in the market are now positioning themselves.”

While Fabre believes that ZTE could be well equipped to capitalise as the technology slowly gains ground, with Gartner forecast estimating it will account for 3.1 percent of all mobile connection by 2015, the mobile firm will have plenty to do to stay ahead of the competition.

“All of the major companies have been making noise about smaller base station over the past year and a half, as the distinction is increasingly blurring with femtocells as base stations get smaller.”” Fabre explains.

“But we can be sure that ZTE rivals have developments in their own labs already.”

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