AT&T has boldly declared that it will be officially rolling out its standards based mobile 5G offering in a dozen cities across the United States within the year. Although the major US wireless carrier’s announcement did not include any details with regards to which specific 12 markets are being targeted or on which spectrum bands the mobile 5G will be deployed, industry watchers are finding it interesting that the company is focusing on mobile 5G, unlike its rival Verizon Wireless, which is putting most of its attention to readying its fixed wireless access 5G service for commercial launch.
AT&T also did not share any information as to which vendors it is working with. But the national mobile operator did mention that because the 3GPP (Third Generation Partnership Project) had already completed key elements of the 5G New Radio (5G NR) standards more than a couple of weeks ago, this should pave the way for hardware, chip set, and mobile device manufacturers to start developing 5G compatible products soon.
Melissa Arnoldi, the president of Technology and Operations at AT&T, enthused that 5G will dramatically transform consumers’ daily lives -- from the way they work to how they consume popular entertainment. She further stated that by bringing super reduced latency and incredibly fast connection speeds, 5G will foster more innovation in the fields of virtual and augmented reality, more immersive 4K media experiences, and driverless automobiles, among many other aspects.
Apart from debuting its mobile 5G offering for end users this year, AT&T is also looking to conduct additional 5G tests for businesses from diverse industries. The overall aim is to help enterprises explore ways in which they can integrate 5G wireless technology in their operations in order to achieve a better experience for their customers.
It is no secret that AT&T is one of the most eager to usher in the 5G era. The past year has seen the company announce its 5G Evolution markets that take full advantage of LTE Advanced (LTA) technology. Then just last month, the second biggest wireless service provider in the country also started conducting 5G trials in the city of Waco in Texas, partnering with Magnolia. The carrier has also launched similar tests in Austin, Texas, Kalamazoo, Michigan, and South Bend, Indiana. For 2018, AT&T has plans to hold further 5G mobility tests utilizing millimeter wave spectrum, and as a matter of fact, the mobile operator has already set up additional test bed capability in Austin.
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