Van Boom 22 ms test 230Verizon shocked many by specifying 30 ms as the latency on its 5G network. Its top officials predicted much faster connections; many, especially politicians, talk of 1 ms. In multiple independent tests, Verizon usually was somewhat better than 30 ms, down to 24 ms In Telstra in Australia, Daniel van Boom and Ian Knighton of CNET found 22 ms in a test. A thoughtful article. A test in Korea returned 25 ms. Several in England were 30-35 ms.

The latency can be brought down by putting special servers inside the carrier system, an Edge Network. Expect 15-25 ms depending on where in the network the servers are deployed. Most will be one to three routers from the cell, perhaps at a C-RAN or exchange. Some will be further back in the network.Verizon is also improving the transport and backhaul on its system, which could be almost as effective as a regional edge network.

1 ms works in the lab, but less than 15-20 ms will be rare on public networks for years. 

For almost all purposes, the meaningful latency is from the phone to the server it's trying to reach. If servers were frequently placed at the cell, that could be 10-15 ms. Few if any carriers are planning that, however. An industrial 5G network can have a server at the 5G cell, bringing latency down to about 10 ms.

URLLC, the next version of 5G, will reduce all the above figures by ~5ms. In-building and similar locations with URLLC should be able to get down to 4-7 ms, mostly after 2023.

DT and Vodafone have started offering Edge, on a system designed by MobiledgeX. Nicki Palmer says Verizon Edge will be commercial by yearend 2019. China will build an incredible network, bringing over one billion people within 25 ms of a server. 

The "air latency" of today's 5G is 8-12 ms. That's meaningful for a network architect but has nothing to do with user experience. The "1 millisecond" was an aspirational goal to promote 5G, not really expect for many years.

dave ask


Vivo is selling new the iQOO 5G premium quality phone for US$536.

Lei Jun Xiaomi "5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020"5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020" I say sooner

Verizon CEO Ronan Dunne: >1/2 VZ 5G "will approximate to a good 4G service" Midband in "low hundreds" Mbps

CFO John Stephens says AT&T is going to cut capex soon.

Bharti in India has lost 45M customers who did not want to pay the minimum USS2/month. It's shutting down 3G to free some spectrum for 4G. It is cutting capex, dangerous when the 12 gigabytes/month of use continues to rise.

Huawei in 16 days sold 1,000,000 5G Mate 20s.  

China has over 50,000 upgraded base stations and may have more than 200,000 by yearend 2019. The growth is astonishing and about to accelerate. China will have more 5G than North America and Europe combined for several years.

5G phone prices are down to $580 in China from Oppo. Headed under $300 in 2020 and driving demand.

No one believed me when I wrote in May, 90% of Huawei U.S. purchases can be rapidly replaced and that Huawei would survive and thrive. Financial results are in, with 23% growth and increased phone sales. It is spending $17B on research in 2019, up > 10%. 

5G phones spotted from Sharp and Sony

NTT DOCOMO will begin "pre-commercial service Sept 20 with over 100 live bases. Officially, the commercial start is 2020.

 More newsfeed


Welcome  1,800,000 Koreans bought 5G in the first four months. The demand is there, and most of the technology works. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

The estimates you hear about 5G costs are wildly exaggerated. Verizon is building the most advanced wireless network while reducing capex. Deutsche Telekom and Orange/France Telecom also confirm they won't raise capex.

Massive MIMO in either 4G or "5G" can increase capacity 3X to 7X, including putting 2.3 GHz to 4.2 GHz to use. Carrier Aggregation, 256 QAM, and other tools double and triple that. Verizon sees cost/bit dropping 40% per year.

Cisco & others see traffic growth slowing to 30%/year or less.  I infer overcapacity almost everywhere.  

Believe it or not, 80+% of 5G (mid-band) for several years will be slower than good 4G, which is more developed.