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Friday, 11 January 2013

The four C's of Release-12 enhancements

Mid last year, I did a post on the LTE Rel-12 workshop and later another post on the progress.  Late last year, 3GPP posted a news item that the Rel-12 will be available by June 2014 and the main areas of focus will be as follows:


Exploiting new business opportunities

  • Public Safety and Critical Communications 
    — Group Communications (GCSE_LTE)
  • Proximity Services, including both Public Safety and Commercial aspects (ProSe)
  • Machine Type Communications 
    — UE Power Consumption, Small Data and Device Triggering (MTCe_UEPCOPMTCe_SDDTE )

WiFi integration

  • Network Selection aspects (WLAN_NS)
  • S2a Mobility with GTP for WLAN (FS_SaMOG)
  • Optimized Offloading to WLAN in 3GPP-RAT mobility (FS_WORM)

System capacity and stability

  • User plane congestion (UPCON)
  • Core Network Overload (FS_CNO)
In addition to those three areas, other features can still be considered for completion in the Release 12 timeframe. The SA2 Working Group - responsible for Architecture - will produce time budgets to see whether further priority could be put on;
  • Pure IMS features that can run in parallel with key items
  • Policy and Charging Control for supporting fixed broadband access networks, PCC for fixed terminals (P4C BB1 and BB2)
  • Application Based Charging (FS_ABC)
  • User Monitoring Control Enhancements (FS_UMONC)
  • LIPA Mobility and SIPTO at the Local Network (LIMONET)
  • Operator Policies for IP Interface Selection (OPIIS)
Working Group SA2 will provide time budgeting information, for the selected features, at the next Plenary meeting - TSG#59, in March 2013.


Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) has published their own whitepaper on 'LTE Release 12 and Beyond' (available on Slideshare here).

The following is their take on the four C's:


Release 12 enhancements focus on the four areas of Capacity, Coverage, Coordination (between cells), and Cost. Improvements in these areas are based on using several technology enablers: small cell enhancements, macro cell enhancements, New Carrier Type (NCT) and Machine-Type Communications (MTC). These enablers are described in this paper.

Customer experience, capacity and coverage will be improved with small cell enhancements, based on inter-site Carrier Aggregation, LTE-WLAN integration and macro cell enhancements. Small cell enhancements are also known as enhanced local access.

NCT helps achieve the required changes in the physical layer and initially provides base station energy savings, flexibility in deployment and ways to reduce interference in heterogeneous networks (HetNets).

Improvements in capacity and a more robust network performance are achieved by 3D Beamforming/MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output), advanced user equipment (UE) receivers and evolved Coordinated Multipoint (CoMP) techniques, as well as through Self-Organizing Networks for small cell deployments.

Finally, new spectrum footprint and new business will be opened up by optimizing the system for Machine-Type Communications, as well as by, for example, using LTE for public safety.


The whitepaper is available on Slideshare here.

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