ZTE has signed an agreement with SoftBank for a 5G trial over sub6GHz spectrum at 4.5GHz across metropolitan areas in Tokyo. For this trial, ZTE will provide 5G end-to-end network solutions and will work together with SoftBank to verify the performance of 5G technologies under real world conditions.
SoftBank has already started joint research and development (R&D) with ZTE on key 5G technology, massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO), which has been commercially deployed in its live 4G network since the second half of 2016. Based on their experience from the commercial network, SoftBank and ZTE are planning to further explore leveraging this technology in the 5G era.
According to company, ZTE has a long term partnership with SoftBank in key 5G technologies such as massive MIMO, and is now expanding that work to accelerate 5G new radio (NR) readiness.