5G Mobile Trial with a Consumer Device Completed Successfully in Waco

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The Dallas-based telecommunications company AT&T® continues to see Waco city as a prolific testing area for futuristic technology. Recently, it claimed a world’s first status as the Telco giant connected a mobile hotspot ‘puck’ to one of its 5G networks here.

The transmission happened between a cellular tower and NETGEAR Nighthawk® 5G Mobile Hotspot, which AT&T® expects to be the first commercially accessible 5G mobile device.

“This is the first standards-based mobile 5G device in the world able to access a live millimeter wave 5G network, and it will be available exclusively from AT&T® later this year,” said AT&T® spokesperson Diane Brandon.

The Telco is now in a race with different carriers to launch 5G, which offers ten to a hundred times faster speeds than present wireless devices. The fifth-generation wireless is also seen as a foundation for telemedicine, self-driving cars, the IoT, and other innovations. The wireless provider Verizon® rolled out a pilot program for residential fixed 5G in four cities recently, but officials of AT&T® have downplayed that announcement, stating the launch does not conform to industry standards.

Brandon said the company expects to be the first to introduce 5G mobile services in the US, with the launch in a dozen cities. They are Atlanta, Dallas, Charlotte, Houston, Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Louisville, Oklahoma City, New Orleans, Raleigh, San Antonio, and Waco. As of 2019, nineteen US cities will get the service, comprising Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, Orlando, Nashville, San Jose and San Francisco.

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“We will announce additional markets individually as we make our mobile 5G network live locally,” AT&T® officials said. It made further comments in e-mails in response to questions raised by a daily. “We’ve conducted many of our recent firsts in Waco because we have a robust fiber presence in the market, local businesses like Magnolia at the Silos have welcomed the future of connectivity, the city has made pro-business investments, and it is half-way between our HQ in Dallas and 5G lab in Austin,” stated the Telco.

“This was an historic event because it was the first time a connection was established between a mmWave mobile 5G network and a standards-based mobile 5G commercial device,” the company statement added. “Both ends of the connection were on real equipment, not just testing for connection with what you’d find in a lab”.

The recent testing followed up other test runs in September 2018, when the carrier conducted “the world’s first wireless 5G data transfer over millimeter wave using standards-based production equipment with a mobile form factor devices.” According to AT&T®, the difference in the earlier test and recent test is that the above-mentioned consumer product replaced the nonspecific mobile device.

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