Mobile network stations now the size of a briefcase

Vodafone is hoping its new technology, developed together with Ericsson, will eliminate the need for expensive and disruptive cranes when setting up mobile network cell sites.

The telecom company announced on Tuesday that it has started installing the Ericsson Radio System – a new mini base-station radio unit.

The unit supports both 4G and 4G+, is the size of a briefcase, and very easy to install. Vodafone says technicians could simply walk up the stairs, the system in hand, and install it on a rooftop or other suitable location, hassle-free.

But it's not just its size and installation speed that are the benefits of th new system – the company says it offers three times the capacity, while at the same time being more energy efficient. Talk about a significant improvement.

The two companies have said the first station has been installed in Southwark, London, with more to come.

Vodafone UK’s Chief Technology Officer Jorge Fernandes said: “We continue to look at new and innovative ways of providing improved mobile coverage in order to meet our customers’ soaring demand for mobile data and video while minimising disruption to the general public and improving the aesthetics of the surrounding area.”

“We are delighted to be partnering with Ericsson, one of our key network suppliers, on this project and look forward to further engaging with local councils and Government to look at ways of reducing red tape around site planning for mobile mast installations.”

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