Sweden’s second- and third-largest mobile operators by users, Tele2 and Telenor, have achieved data speeds of 290Mbps using LTE Advanced technology in tests via their Net4Mobility infrastructure sharing venture in partnership with Chinese equipment manufacturer Huawei. LTE Advanced – a 4G evolution which uses Carrier Aggregation technology to multiply frequency bands – has been tested on the Net4Mobility network in the 2600MHz band; future versions of LTE Advanced will reach mobile data speeds of up to 1Gbps. Regarding a commercial launch date for the latest 4G evolution, ‘LTE Advanced will be rolled out as soon as the technology matures and our customers demand it,’ said Alexandra Drevenlid, CTO of Tele2 Sweden.
Tele2 and Telenor Sweden formed their equal joint venture to build a fourth-generation network under the name Net4Mobility in April 2009, pooling 2G/3G/4G frequency bands including 2600MHz and 900MHz, before choosing Huawei to deploy the LTE network in December that year, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database. Commercial LTE-based mobile broadband services were launched over the Net4Mobility network in November 2010, with both network partners aiming to expand coverage to 99% of the population by the end of 2012. Telenor’s latest press release stated that its 4G services are now available in 116 municipalities throughout Sweden, whilst at the end of March 2012 Tele2 reported that its commercial LTE footprint reached 60% of the population. Both Tele2 and Telenor are augmenting existing 2600MHz LTE coverage with 800MHz and 1800MHz frequency bands won in March 2011 and October 2011 respectively. GlobalComms notes that Swedish mobile market leader TeliaSonera claimed 61% LTE population coverage as of April 2012, and is also planning to expand services nationwide with 2600MHz/1800MHz/800MHz 4G base stations.