Korean gadget giant Samsung has picked their sometime-competitor-sometime-collaborator Qualcomm Technologies to team up on launching small cell technologies and products supporting LTE in unlicensed spectrum (LTE-U). Samsung has had a strange relationship with Qualcomm to say the least – they are competitors in the chipset industry (Samsung via Exynos), but are collaborating in very strange ways. One of them is that Qualcomm actually uses Samsung foundries for their processor cores. Another one is this, although this might be a little more understandable.
Samsung has recently announced the LTE-U eFemto cell – which incorporates a Qualcomm FSM9955 chipset. What the technology does is that it aggregates LTE bandwith from the licensed and unlicensed spectrum, which in turn helps mobile operators cope with the skyrocketing demand for mobile data. Simply put, the new Samsung LTE-U eFemto cell improves network performance in congested areas.
The Samsung LTE-U eFemto cell can support three separate data streams of 20 MHz, across both licensed and unlicensed spectrum, offering a peak download throughput of up to 450Mbps. There are worries, however, that since LTE-U will take advantage of home wireless routers and small cell towers, that it might cause the degeneration of local WiFi signals.
Be that as it may, Samsung seems bent on pushing forward with the technology, and a device featuring the Samsung LTE-U eFemto cell will be displayed both at the Samsung and the Qualcomm booths at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona which rolls in in just a few days.