The comparison of TDD LTE and FDD LTE

Paired spectrum


Does not require paired spectrum as both transmit and receive occur on the same channel


Requires paired spectrum with sufficient frequency separation to allow simultaneous transmission and reception

Hardware cost



Lower cost as no diplexer is needed to isolate the transmitter and receiver. As cost of the UEs is of major importance because of the vast numbers that are produced, this is a key aspect.


Diplexer is needed and cost is higher.

Channel reciprocity


Channel propagation is the same in both directions which enables transmit and receive to use on set of parameters


Channel characteristics different in both directions as a result of the use of different frequencies

UL / DL asymmetry 


It is possible to dynamically change the UL and DL capacity ratio to match demand


UL / DL capacity determined by frequency allocation set out by the regulatory authorities. It is therefore not possible to make dynamic changes to match capacity. Regulatory changes would normally be required and capacity is normally allocated so that it is the same in either direction.

Guard period / guard band


Guard period required to ensure uplink and downlink transmissions do not clash. Large guard period will limit capacity. Larger guard period normally required if distances are increased to accommodate larger propagation times.


Guard band required to provide sufficient isolation between uplink and downlink. Large guard band does not impact capacity.

Discontinuous transmission


Discontinuous transmission is required to allow both uplink and downlink transmissions. This can degrade the performance of the RF power amplifier in the transmitter.


Continuous transmission is required.

Cross slot interference 


Base stations need to be synchronised with respect to the uplink and downlink transmission times. If neighbouring base stations use different uplink and downlink assignments and share the same channel, then interference may occur between cells


Not applicable


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