Many of us might be content with 4G LTE for now but 5G is the next frontier that companies in this business want to conquer. Samsung and Verizon have announced at Mobile World Congress 2016 that they have started testing multi-gigabit 5G cellular access in “real-world” conditions around Verizon’s headquarters. The tests are also being carried out in moving vehicles and indoors.
Companies like Verizon and Samsung are pushing for a common spec for 5G testing. Big Red has co-founded the 5G Open Trial Specification Alliance for precisely this purpose, hoping to run more tests between now and 2018.
The tests are being run in a controlled environment as the equipment is located close to a base station so it’s not really representative of the experience you and I can expect when this technology finally goes public.
Nevertheless, the tests show that there’s enough bandwidth on the 5G network to stream 4K video, even virtual reality video which requires 17 simultaneous feeds, effortlessly.
Verizon isn’t the only carrier in the country that’s looking to get the first-mover advantage with 5G. AT&T is planning to conduct tests in Austin later this year but for now Verizon can boast that it started testing 5G earlier than AT&T. Big Red expects to offer commerical 5G service by 2017.