AT&T to launch mobile 5G in Atlanta, Dallas and Waco in 2018

Posted:
in General Discussion edited February 27
After teasing an initial rollout phase for its next-generation 5G network in January, AT&T on Wednesday got a little more specific by naming the first three cities that will gain access to the speedy mobile technology by the end of 2018.

Cell tower with clouds


In a press release posted to its official website, AT&T said Atlanta, Dallas and Waco will be among a batch of 12 U.S. cities to benefit from standards-based mobile 5G later this year. The carrier will announce the remaining 9 cities in the coming months.

"After significantly contributing to the first phase of 5G standards, conducting multi-city trials, and literally transforming our network for the future, we're planning to be the first carrier to deliver standards-based mobile 5G - and do it much sooner than most people thought possible," said Igal Elbaz, SVP of Wireless Network Architecture and Design at AT&T.

AT&T initially announced plans to launch 5G in a set of pilot locations last month, but failed to offer specifics at the time.

The telco's 5G deployments this year will be based on 3GPP standards and operate on the millimeter wave, or mmWave, spectrum. Moving ahead, mmWave will be employed in certain 5G coverage areas, while others are set to rely on different spectrum bands.

Once the system rolls out, AT&T expects transfer speeds to reach theoretical peak speeds of multiple gigabits per second, while lowering latency over existing 4G technologies. Such a bump in performance requires the use of software-defined networking and edge computing, the company says.

To help realize its goal, the firm is opening a 5G lab in Austin, Tex., where engineers will perform stress tests on various consumer equipment before the devices see general release. The lab will also be outfitted with an outdoor 5G testbed to evaluate 5G applications and real-world use cases.

AT&T claims it was one of the "key drivers" for acceleration of the 5G standard, key components of which were adopted by 3GPP, the international wireless standards body, last year.

Device and parts manufacturers are already working on 5G equipment, including Apple and its suppliers. Last May, Apple filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission to start testing of 5G hardware, while reports in November suggested the company is working closely with Intel on potential 5G modem solutions.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 7
    welshdogwelshdog Posts: 1,595member
    Initially 5G is going to be big disappointment to a lot of early adopters. The millimeter wave radio cannot penetrate wall, windows or even leaves.  Spotty coverage will be an understatement for 5G.  It will take many years before there are enough transmitters to provide usable coverage.  However, the huge fiber backbone they are installing/improving to support 5G will likewise give 4G a boost as the article mentions.  In fact, 4G will remain in place for a long time as it will serve as a fallback for when your phone can't receive 5G.
    GeorgeBMacairnerdcaladaniancbrookerjony0llama
  • Reply 2 of 7
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 2,468member
    Yesterday it was claimed that the first official 5G 'call' was made over existing 4G infrastructure with a top speed of 2.09Gb/s. Latency was 10 milliseconds.

    Huawei and Vodafone carried out the real world demonstration in a connection between Barcelona and Castelldefels (Spain). The entire mobile telecommunications industry is converging on Barcelona for MWC2018.

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201802/21/WS5a8cc8dca3106e7dcc13d2c4.html

    This follows wider testing in last year in Korea

    http://www.huawei.com/en/press-events/news/2017/11/Huawei-LGU-World-First-Commercial-5G
    edited February 21 GeorgeBMacairnerd
  • Reply 3 of 7
    pakittpakitt Posts: 143member
    More bandwidth for....? Facebook?
    Here in Germany one has hardly coverage with 3G or LTE to make a phone call on main train lines, city urban lines, major highways or city tunnels. I read this stuff about 5G and wonder what will it bring in a country that doesn't even have proper broadband at home, and mobile phone carriers have no backbone to support even LTE speeds...

  • Reply 4 of 7
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,507member
    How about we make our networks more reliable and wider spread before trying to make them faster? I don't care about speed if it craps out and works like shit in a more populated area, or when inside a building. 
    frankie
  • Reply 5 of 7
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,854member
    avon b7 said:
    Yesterday it was claimed that the first official 5G 'call' was made over existing 4G infrastructure with a top speed of 2.09Gb/s. Latency was 10 milliseconds.

    Huawei and Vodafone carried out the real world demonstration in a connection between Barcelona and Castelldefels (Spain). The entire mobile telecommunications industry is converging on Barcelona for MWC2018.

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201802/21/WS5a8cc8dca3106e7dcc13d2c4.html

    This follows wider testing in last year in Korea

    http://www.huawei.com/en/press-events/news/2017/11/Huawei-LGU-World-First-Commercial-5G
    5G is a gimmick at this point. If I have full LTE signal strength wherever I go, I ain't give a shit about 5G.
    jony0
  • Reply 6 of 7
    yawn, Chicago suburbs please!
  • Reply 7 of 7
    Having worked in site acquisition for this company, among others, I am skeptical.  More than once I’ve heard big plans, where we’d go out and tie up tower sites, then nothing would happen.  AT&T appears to have the resources to up their infrastructure game, but often chooses not to.  My guess is they’ll upgrade in some metro areas, but it will take forever and miss large swaths of the country.

    A few years back I relocated to a rural area in the southeast, and the coverage here was and continues to be crap.  I see towers with additional capacity where AT&T could collocate, but they don’t.  Yet, in this same area, Verizon has nearly 100% coverage.
    I too care much less about faster speeds than adequate coverage.  So after a couple of decades with AT&T, I switched to Verizon.  Which is too bad, since I actually liked AT&T as a customer. Mostly.
Sign In or Register to comment.