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SK Telecom Successfully Demonstrates Bidirectional LTE FDD/TDD Handover with Ericsson and Altair Semiconductor

SEOUL, KOREA, Sept. 10, 2012 — SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that it, together with Ericsson, the world’s largest mobile network equipment maker, and Altair Semiconductor, the world’s leading developer of 4G LTE chipsets, developed a two-way handover technology that supports both Frequency Division Duplex (FDD) LTE and Time Division Duplex (TDD) LTE- two different duplex modes of the LTE technology standard – in one device, and successfully demonstrated the technology in a moving vehicle environment for the first time in the world. SK Telecom introduced the technology at an operating committee meeting held by the Next Generation Mobile Networks (NGMN)[1] from September 18 to 20 in Turin, Italy.

The technology that realizes bidirectional handover between FDD LTE and TDD LTE is expected to increase the use of dual-mode devices that support both duplex modes with a single modem chipset.

Since mobile operators are applying different LTE modes and a growing number of operators are using both FDD LTE and TD-LTE, bidirectional LTE FDD/TDD handover technology is being focused as a core LTE technology that can ensure seamless data communications on FDD and TDD spectrum even while on international roaming.

For development of the LTE FDD/TDD handover technology, SK Telecom, Ericsson and Altair Semiconductor created a test field around SK Telecom’s Bundang Building with a cell radius of 500m-1.5km and in a moving vehicle environment. SK Telecom said that the handover technology demonstration verified that the performance of handover between FDD LTE and TD-LTE is the same as handover on single FDD mode. The demonstration also showed that the technology is capable of adjusting the coverage of LTE FDD and LTE TDD base stations as well as offloading traffic depending on the level of concentration in areas covered by both duplex modes.

Martin Wiktorin, President of Ericsson-LG said,“Ericsson is dedicated to ensuring the success of seamless data communications on converged LTE FDD/TDD for operators, so that they can make the most of their spectrum investments and provide the best quality service for their customers. Ericsson-LG keeps collaborating with SK Telecom to drive seamless handover and a well-functioning LTE ecosystem.” And Eran Eshed, Co-founder and VP of Marketing of Altair Semiconductor said, “We are pleased to partner with SK Telecom and Ericsson on this project and look forward to the public launch of the bi-directional handover feature in the very near future.”

Meanwhile, along with the bidirectional LTE FDD/TDD handover technology, SK Telecom also introduced its other core LTE technologies such as Multi Carrier[2] and HD Voice[3] (VoLTE) at the NGMN meeting held from September18-20 in Turin, Italy and drew great interest from executives and technological experts of 14 global telecommunications companies like AT&T, Deutsche Telecom, China Mobile, F/TOrange and Vodafone.

Kang Jong-Ryeol, Head of Network Technology R&D Center of SK Telecom said, “The bidirectional LTE FDD/TDD handover technology will allow users to experience seamless LTE service even while on international roaming. Building on our strong competitiveness in LTE FDD technologies, represented by the world’s first commercialization of Multi Carrier and HD Voice, SK Telecom will focus on developing LTE TDD technologies and actively seek export opportunities for its dual-mode (LTE FDD/TDD) technologies.

About Altair Semiconductor
Altair Semiconductor is the world’s leading developer of ultra-low power, small footprint and high performance 4G semiconductors. Altair’s chipsets can be found in approximately 30 end-user devices – ranging from USB dongles to smartphones – built by its more than 15 customers across North America, Europe, China, India and Taiwan – making it one of the only TDD/FDD LTE chipset manufacturers in the world with commercially available products. Altair’s comprehensive product portfolio includes baseband processors, multi-band RF transceivers for both FDD and TDD bands, and a range of reference hardware and product level protocol stack software. Based on a novel, proprietary Software Defined Radio (SDR) processor, codenamed “O[2]P™”, Altair’s products are the smallest and most highly power optimized in the industry, offering an unmatched combination of flexibility and performance. For more information, visit the company’s website at Follow Altair on Twitter: @AltairSemi