Japanese CDMA operator KDDI today announced it has chosen Hitachi and Nortel as vendors for the deployment of its future core Long Term Evolution (LTE) network. A 2010 timeframe appears likely for deployment of the next-generation mobile network, as the operator noted in a statement that “high levels of reliability, convenience, service differentiation and customer satisfaction are key aims of the LTE network deployment” that is part of its ‘Challenge 2010’ initiative. KDDI added that “the new LTE network from Hitachi and Nortel will provide an overlay to the existing CDMA mobile network, enabling instant access to the bandwidth-intense multimedia content and applications demanded by KDDI’s tech-savvy 30 million mobile consumers and business users.” The operator said it chose Nortel due to its “clear technology leadership in early LTE trials [including US operator Verizon Wireless] with industry-firsts in high-speed mobility handover and in LTE interworking with CDMA which is the base of our current network.” Meanwhile, Hitachi is an existing network infrastructure and handset supplier of KDDI, Japan’s second-largest operator.
The launch will compete with Japanese market-leader NTT DoCoMo, which has also revealed plans to launch LTE in 2010. Such moves place Japan as a global pioneer for deployment of LTE networks, a next-generation mobile communications technology that is part of the GSM family of technologies. The CDMA Development Group last month noted that CDMA operators Verizon Wireless, SK Telecom, KTF, Telecom New Zealand, KDDI, China Telecom, MetroPCS and Aircell have all announced intentions to deploy LTE.