Telstra switches on 50th 5G base station
Telstra has switched on 5G-enabled mobile base stations in Adelaide, Canberra and Perth, and has signed on telecoms equipment vendor Ericsson as its key technology partner for its nationwide 5G rollout.
The newly upgraded base stations in the three cities bring the total number of 5G base stations Telstra has deployed to date to 50, ahead of the commercialisation of the 5G mobile standard.
Telstra has already deployed 5G base stations in Brisbane, Toowoomba and at its 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast.
In a blog post, Telstra CEO Andy Penn said the early 5G deployments will help the company test 5G technology in Australian geographical and environmental conditions in a real-life network environment before the first 5G-enabled devices hit the market.
He said the company is on track to reach its target of deploying 200 5G enabled base stations on its mobile network by the end of calendar 2018.
“5G was a key element of Telstra’s T22 strategy and the decision to appoint Ericsson as its 5G technology partner was a critical one,” Penn said.
“5G will deliver ultralow latency and high data speeds while supporting massive machine-type communications. As such, 5G will fuel a host of new economy activity and new products and services across different industries. That it is why it is crucial that Australia is at the cutting edge of 5G technology, and together Telstra and Ericsson will deliver this.”
The 5G mobile standard calls for each cell site to be capable of delivering at least 20 Gbps downlink and 10 Gbps uplink, with sub-1 ms latency.
The first 5G devices are expected to reach the market in 2019, but initial 5G device rollouts are expected to be concentrated in the fixed wireless router market. The technology may not be widely commercially available in mobile devices until 2020.
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