ATT 94 meg 5G 230

Gordon Mansfield of AT&T "told [management] that I want every day that’s left in the year ... The equipment is literally coming off production lines and going into the field — we are not even using normal shipping channels.” AT&T is the first in the world to use 39 GHz, a remarkable achievement.

AT&T has one of the best and most experienced senior engineering teams in the world, but the first efforts are struggling. It claims the supplier - probably Ericsson - isn't ready with the equipment in the 39 GHz band. They refuse to provide information on network speed. It may be as low as 250 megabits, half the LTE speed at T-Mobile in Manhattan.

Lessons learned:  

 “Now, in mmWave, it’s a new frontier.  Sometimes you expect the signal to be there and it isn’t, so you have to adjust. As you move through the coverage area, you will be served by different beams, and you have to understand transitions between beams,” said Hristov. “RF engineers have to be hyper-accurate about placing and facing nodes … [because] if you don’t land on the right beam, you won’t get maximum performance.”

Mansfield also said, "The first IoT devices will be really high-end." Most users will "trade off capability for cost.” said Mansfield, noting that the first 5G IoT devices will be “really high-end.” I believe almost everyone will continue to use Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and 4G for IoT for years. 5G units will not just be expensive. They will be large and run down the battery. 

Todd Zeiler confirms that mmWave and sub-6 are very different. "We need to explain that we have a fork in the road now. Millimeter wave will have a similar improvement, but sub-6 is about a more efficient interface with improved latency — it’s not about speed-doubling." 3GPP did the world a disservice by calling both 5G.

The AT&T folks agree there's a long way to go. Hristov notes, “It will take years to get to the point where you have the right tooling to accurately predict what you are trying to cover and serve," Zeiler adds, "software upgrades in 2019 that enhance beam-forming capabilities not expected to be mature until sometime in 2020."  

The good news: "Coverage and data rates have generally been better than expected."

Quotes from 5G Networks Under Construction by Rick Merritt of EE Times.

The picture is a pre-launch demonstration by AT&T shot  by Corinne Reichart of ZD Net

 

dave ask

Newsfeed

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 US#2/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 6 days sold 300,000 5G Mate 20s. Delivery begins on 8/16. 

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

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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.