U.S. Cellular, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and Ericsson announced that the companies have successfully achieved the first extended range 5G NR millimeter Wave (mmWave) data call in the U.S. on a commercial network. The extended-range data call milestone was completed in Janesville, Wisconsin over a more than 5 km distance with speeds >100 Mbps. This achievement redefines the perception of 5G mmWave spectrum as an urban- or high-density-only deployment technology and offers new opportunities to use current infrastructure for broader 5G coverage.
This milestone demonstrates that mmWave can help close the “connectivity divide” and expand broadband services throughout rural, suburban, and urban communities. This breakthrough gives communications service providers a cost effective way to expand their coverage and deliver 5G experience to communities that previously were not serviced or may have lacked a reliable connection.
It will also open the door for new use cases, which will bring 5G benefits to homes and business everywhere, from urban to rural communities. For example, Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) installations can provide a cost-effective way to deliver fiber-like internet speeds wirelessly over mmWave to institutions such as schools, hospitals and town halls, and for addressing some of the “last mile” challenges in rural areas. FWA provides the bandwidth required to support high definition streaming services that can improve experiences like remote education and remote healthcare in suburban and rural environments.
Mike Irizarry, chief technology officer, U.S. Cellular, says, “This is a key strategic milestone in our 5G evolution. Expanding 5G mmWave coverage enables us to offer high-speed broadband services to consumers and businesses in rural areas and underserved communities and reinforces our commitment to technological leadership for rural America. It is a concrete example where U.S. Cellular is driving innovation leadership in extended range technology from Ericsson and promoting the high-power device ecosystem enabled by Qualcomm Technologies.”
Alejandro Holcman, senior vice president, engineering, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. says, “This major milestone of using mmWave for an extended-range 5G data transfer is paving the way to implement fixed broadband services for broad coverage in urban, suburban and rural environments. With the introduction of the Qualcomm® QTM527 mmWave antenna module as part of the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X55 5G Modem-RF System, we are empowering operators and OEMs to offer high-performance, extended-range multi-gigabit 5G broadband to their customers – which is both flexible and cost-effective, as they can leverage existing 5G network infrastructure.”
Per Narvinger, head of product area networks, Ericsson, says, “Ericsson is constantly pushing the boundaries of 5G technology to bring its benefits everywhere across the globe. Ericsson has a long and successful track record in extending coverage across generations of mobile technologies. Working with our partners, Ericsson has now demonstrated the commercial viability of long-range 5G radio capability for mmWave spectrum.”
The milestone was achieved by applying extended-range software to commercial Ericsson hardware – including AIR5121 and Baseband 6630 – and a 5G CPE device powered by the Snapdragon X55 5G Modem-RF System with the Qualcomm QTM527 mmWave antenna module.
About U.S. Cellular
U.S. Cellular is the fourth-largest full-service wireless carrier in the United States, providing national network coverage and industry-leading innovations designed to elevate the customer experience. The Chicago-based carrier is building a stronger network with the latest 5G technology and offers a wide range of communication services that enhance consumers’ lives, increase the competitiveness of local businesses and improve the efficiency of government operations. It is ranked #1 in the North Central Region in the J.D. Power 2020 Wireless Network Quality Performance Study – Volume 2. To learn more about U.S. Cellular, visit one of its retail stores or www.uscellular.com. To get the latest news, promos and videos, connect with U.S. Cellular on Facebook.com/uscellular, Twitter.com/uscellular and YouTube.com/uscellularcorp.
Qualcomm is the world’s leading wireless technology innovator and the driving force behind the development, launch, and expansion of 5G. When we connected the phone to the internet, the mobile revolution was born. Today, our foundational technologies enable the mobile ecosystem and are found in every 3G, 4G and 5G smartphone. We bring the benefits of mobile to new industries, including automotive, the internet of things, and computing, and are leading the way to a world where everything and everyone can communicate and interact seamlessly.
Qualcomm Incorporated includes our licensing business, QTL, and the vast majority of our patent portfolio. Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, operates, along with its subsidiaries, substantially all of our engineering, research and development functions, and substantially all of our products and services businesses, including our QCT semiconductor business.
Ericsson enables communications service providers to capture the full value of connectivity. The company’s portfolio spans Networks, Digital Services, Managed Services, and Emerging Business and is designed to help our customers go digital, increase efficiency and find new revenue streams. Ericsson’s investments in innovation have delivered the benefits of telephony and mobile broadband to billions of people around the world. The Ericsson stock is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and on Nasdaq New York. www.ericsson.com