T-Mobile Will Doubling the Number of Antennas on Its LTE Network with 4×2 MIMO

Posted by at 1:10 pm on April 25, 2014

T-Mobile is prepared to strengthen its LTE 4G network by doubling the number of antennas on its base stations in select markets.

T-Mobile’s network currently uses a 2×2 MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) configuration. This means there are two antennas on the base station used in parallel to connect to two antennas on the cell phone. Switching to four antennas on the base station will help fill in the coverage gaps within a given cell, meaning phones in that particular cell will see better overall coverage and performance of the network on both the downlink and the uplink. “We do see the benefits 4×2 MIMO offers and will be deploying this in many cities in 2014 as part of our Wideband LTE rollout,” said T-Mobile VP of Technology Mark McDiarmid in a statement provided to Gigaom.

“All of T-Mobile’s available devices currently support 4×2 MIMO and we’ll ensure that new devices will as well. We believe this will be one of the first deployments by a top carrier network in the U.S.” This means T-Mobile customers won’t have to do anything in order to enjoy the benefits of this improved coverage. While speeds themselves won’t improve, individual cell sites will be able to provide a more consistent connection to more devices.

The first three markets to see these improvements will be Chicago, Dallas, and San Antonio. T-Mobile didn’t say what other markets it is targeting.

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