5G speeds Opensignal August 2020 230

Opensignal released the first international comparison of 5G speeds. I was startled to discover that Saudi Arabia is far ahead in both coverage and speed. I did a little research and discovered that SA, along with the Gulf countries, is further along than anyone in Europe.

The average 5G speed in SA was 414 Mbps, In the USA, it was 51 Mbps, slower than 4G in Canada and most major US cities. Most U.S. connections were low-band, which by its nature tends to be slower than 4G.

Saudi Telecom has upgraded 3,000 of its 7,000 towers. Zain claims it has even wider 5G coverage than STC. Opensignal found that Saudis connected to 5G 34% of the time, leading the world. Kuwait was second, at 29%. It doesn't have data yet for the UAS or Qatar, but I know both also have relatively good coverage.

Korea was second, at 312 Mbps. That's less than half the figure of the Korean government, but much closer to results in other countries using similar spectrum to the Koreans. See . The Koreans have over 7 million 5G subscribers, 2nd or 3rd in the world.

 These are very early numbers. Opensignal has a great deal of data, collected from apps, and its results are usually consistent with other reports.

T-Mobile now is upgrading about 3,000 towers/month to mid-band and will have about 1/3rd of the country by yearend. CTO Neville Ray is averaging speeds over 300 Mbps on the lightly loaded network. That will bring up average US speeds. But AT&T and Verizon will rely on low-band for most connections for at least the next year.

dave ask

@analysisbranch for latest updates

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Welcome  Asia is installing hundreds of thousands of 5G radios and adding 5G subs by the tens of millions. The west is far behind. 200,000,000 in 2020

The demand is there, and most of the technology works. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

I'm Dave Burstein, Editor. I've been reporting telecom since 1999. I love to hear from readers and say thank you when you find an error. daveb@dslprime.com

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