AT&T Identifies More 5G Test Cities

And Korean telecoms coordinate their own 5G introduction
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DALLAS — AT&T recently added to its plans on the launch of commercial 5G services in the US by identifying three additional cities in which it will deploy a standards-based mobile service by the end of the year. The cities are Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., and Oklahoma City, reports rcrwireless.com.

The company began testing millimeter wave transmissions in 2016 in Austin, Texas, and expanded testing, which included enterprises of varying sizes as well as residential housing, to other locations. In Waco, Texas, AT&T has tested its service at Magnolia Market at the Silos, using 28 GHz millimeter wave spectrum. This test demonstrated wireless speeds around 1.2 Gbps using a 400 MHz channel and latency rates between nine and 12 milliseconds, according to the same article.

Verizon also plans to launch commercial 5G services this year in as many as five U.S. markets. The carrier plans to use fixed wireless access to support residential broadband, and has so far named Sacramento and Los Angeles, Calif., as launch markets. Sprint is planning to launch in the first half of 2019 and has listed New York, Phoenix, Kansas City, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington as target markets.

In Korea, the three major mobile operators all say they will launch initial 5G services on the peninsula in March 2019, likely making the country one of the first to get the next-generation wireless offering, according to lightreading.com.

SK Telecom, KT and LG U+ have all agreed to cooperate in launching their 5G networks together during a so-called "Korea 5G Day," expected to happen in March 2019, according to Light Reading. The March 2019 launch appears to match the current expectations of when the first 5G smartphones will arrive in 2019: The first handsets are expected to be available after being unveiled at the next Mobile World Congress in February 2019.

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