Optus aims for 5G fixed wireless rollout in 2019

Optus aims for 5G fixed wireless rollout in 2019

The rollout will begin in key metro areas

Credit: Dreamstime

Optus plans to commence the rollout of a 5G fixed line service in Australia by early 2019, starting with key metropolitan areas.

The move comes after the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), a union of several telecommunications standard development organisations, finalised most parts of the world-wide standardisation of 5G technologies.

The Singtel subsidiary’s announcement comes after the launch of an outdoor trial for 5G New Radio, which delivered 2Gbps download speeds using a potential device for a fixed wireless service in the home and business.

Optus, as with Australia’s other major wireless telecommunications network carriers, Telstra and Vodafone, has been working towards the delivery of 5G network technology for some time.

In 2017, the company launched 4.5G network technology and what it claims was a world-first trial of 3CC CA Massive MIMO technologies.

Additionally, Optus has snapped up a variety of new metropolitan licences for its customers in the 2300 MHz and 3500 MHz spectrum bands during recent Spectrum Auctions, boosting its spectrum holdings in the relevant fields for 5G technologies.

Moreover, the company plans to host a 5G technology showcase during the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, and will be allowing visitors to the Gold Coast’s Broadbeach to experience a taste of what 5G will be able to deliver.

“People have been hearing about 5G for some time, and there is pent up expectation, but to date a lot of the talk has been highly theoretical,” Optus networks managing director, Dennis Wong, said.

“Seeing 5G data speeds through our trial that are up to 15x faster than current technologies allows us to show the potential of this transformative technology to support a new ecosystem of connected devices in the home, the office, the paddock and in the wider community.

“This is a technology and future we at Optus are extremely passionate about. This successful trial is a historical milestone in Optus’ journey to 5G,” he said.

In November last year, Telstra and Ericsson completed what they claimed was the world’s first 5G trial data call over 26GHz radiofrequency spectrum, known as ‘mmWave’, using the telco’s production core network.

In October 2016, meanwhile, Vodafone clocked speeds of 5Gbps over 200 MHz of spectrum in its first local live public trial of the technology, as part of its development of 5G technology.

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