T-Mobile (NASDAQ: TMUS), Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), and Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) today announced they’ve achieved the world’s first low-band 5G data session on a commercial 5G modem. The data session was conducted in T-Mobile’s lab in Bellevue, Washington on 600 MHz – the same spectrum T-Mobile is using to roll out broad, nationwide 5G in the U.S. – marking a major milestone in delivering 5G across America beyond urban areas.
The data session was completed on a mobile test device powered by the second-generation Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X55 5G modem, RF transceiver and RF Front-End (RFFE) solution, as well as commercial 5G radios from the Ericsson Radio System portfolio. The demonstration is an important step toward the launch of the first commercial 5G network using low-band spectrum.
“This is a key step toward achieving our vision of 5G for All,” said Neville Ray, chief technology officer, T-Mobile. “This modem will power devices that tap into the 600 MHz low-band spectrum we’ll use to blanket the country with 5G. And we’re not stopping there. If regulators approve our merger with Sprint, we’ll have the crucial mid-band spectrum and resources needed to supercharge our network and deliver broad AND deep, transformational 5G across the U.S.”
T-Mobile’s 600 MHz low-band spectrum will offer several unique advantages as the foundation for its 5G network, including wider coverage area and deeper signal penetration in buildings than millimeter wave spectrum. T-Mobile’s low-band deployment strategy will enable the rapid expansion of its 5G network by allowing the Un-carrier to easily leverage existing 4G LTE assets and infrastructure.
Similarly, along with bringing low-band support to mobile devices, the Snapdragon X55 5G modem offers advanced multi-mode support for virtually any combination of spectrum bands and modes, including mmWave, sub-6 GHz, standalone and non-standalone, and more – ensuring mobile devices powered by the Snapdragon X55 5G modem and RFFE solutions are compatible with current and future multi-mode 5G networks rolling out around the globe.
“Today’s data call marks a significant milestone in 5G’s ongoing rollout across the United States, paving the way for the launch of commercial networks and devices on low-band FDD spectrum,” said Cristiano Amon, president, Qualcomm Incorporated. “This call demonstrates the ability to dramatically increase 5G’s global footprint and we look forward to continuing our work with industry leaders like Ericsson and T-Mobile to unlock the full potential of 5G for consumers and new industries around the world.”
“Ericsson and Qualcomm Technologies have successfully tested and commercialized 5G globally across different spectrum bands, and together with T-Mobile we have now reached another major milestone as we are enabling 5G on low bands,” said Fredrik Jejdling, executive vice president and head of business area networks, Ericsson. “This shows that our industry is now ready for building wider 5G coverage that will enhance end user experience.”