Asia Briefs: China Mobile selects Ericsson for HK upgrade, Taiwan’s 4G penetration hits 9% & more

In a regular series, Mobile World Live‘s Asia Editor Joseph Waring provides a regional roundup of news snippets:China Mobile selects Ericsson for HK upgrade China Mobile Hong Kong has contracted Ericsson to upgrade its converged FDD/TDD LTE and evolved packet core network.The upgrade includes implementing VoLTE, which will give users instant call set-up and HD voice, as well as enhancements to its charging and support systems that will enable increased personalisation for customers and reduce the time to market for new services.Ericsson will supply VoLTE, based on IP multimedia subsystem technology, with call session control function.Taiwan’s 4G penetration hits 9% Almost 9 per cent of Taiwan’s mobile users have 4G service, according to a survey conducted in October.Far EasTone Telecommunications was the leader with 10.4 per cent of its customers using 4G, followed by Taiwan Mobile with 9.4 per cent and Chunghwa Telecom with 8.2 per cent, according to Foreseeing Innovative New Digiservices, which is under the state-funded Institute for Information Industry.Customers are paying slightly more for 4G service – an average monthly rate of TWD891 ($28) compared to TWD719 for 3G service, the China Post reported.Taiwan’s top three operators launched 4G service in May and June. According to GSMA Intelligence, the three had almost one million 4G connections in Q3 and were forecast to have 2.93 million at the end of the year.SingTel pilot boosts in-building coverage SingTel is trialling Ericsson’s Radio Dot system to improve in-building coverage at Changi Business Park. The operator said its goal is to extend LTE and 3G network coverage into enterprise buildings and public venues.The compact system, using antenna elements or 'dots', allows flexible mounting options and addresses operators’ needs in both medium-size to large indoor locations, Ericsson said. Dots are connected and powered via standard internet LAN cables (Category 5/6/7) to indoor radio units that link to a base station.SingTel Group CTO Tay Soo Meng said: “Knowing the importance of delivering not only good in-building coverage but also having good data throughput for our customers, this new pilot will help us to enhance and improve the SingTel customer experience in both commercial and public buildings.”The trial follows Ericsson's first commercial win for its Radio Dot system, at Vodafone Netherlands.Tizen to feature in ‘smart’ TVs Samsung plans to unveil a range of ‘smart’ TVs running on its Tizen operating system this year - possibly as soon as next week at CES in Las Vegas.The company has been working for years to develop its own open source OS to reduce its dependence on Google's Android platform.Samsung said the TVs can access content and sync with mobile devices to allow viewing on multiple screens. The new TVs will be compatible with Sony Corp’s PlayStation Now streaming service.The release of Tizen in smartphones has faced multiple delays, which has raised questions about the real chance of success for an additional smartphone platform. So far Samsung has only released Tizen in smartwatches.India’s Xolo to push in-house Hive interface Indian handset brand Xolo plans to invest INR150 million ($2.3 million) next year to develop its propriety user interface (Hive) and expects revenue to triple to $1 billion by the end of 2016.Xolo, which is owed by Lava, will hire 100 engineers to work on Hive. The company’s revenue is forecast to reach INR20 billion this year, the Economic Times said.