5G spotted in the wild

Recently we brought news of sightings of T-Mobiles LTE network before it was announced, we even saw the unreleased Galaxy S4 being used to test it. Today we spotted something far bigger, a new cellular technology matching the as-yet unreleased specs of 5G.

The new technology, a marriage of CDMA and GSMA standards best described as CDGSMA, is operating in the 48Ghz band. At these frequencies 5G will offer huge capacity and, crucially, is unlikely to interfere with nuclear guidance frequencies. We’ve observed average speeds of 0.76 Gbps at 1ms latencies, a huge step-change on 4G LTE – where even the best networks average out only a little over 20mbps.

Exotic devices
Reading the android.os.Build.MODEL string [one way to see that Android landscape is crowded], it appears that 5G is being tested on two highly anticipated devices:

    psst-GT-I9500 – likely Galaxy S5
    Google-XXX-phone-shhh – likely Google X Phone

The Google X phone has been the subject of heavy speculation since January when it was revealed by 9to5Google that it had been mentioned in a job listing on Motorola’s website.

It has been suggested that the X-series of phones will replace the Nexus series, rumoured specs include: octocore chip; 6mm thickness; the ability to make a perfect cup of tea; greater Hipster-credibility than an iPhone.

The 5G rollout
So far we have only spotted 5G being rolled out in double-named places, suggesting the technology may have compatbility difficulties with singly-named towns such as Lampeter in Wales.

Places being tested:

  • Dum Dum, India
  • Baden-Baden, Germany
  • Wagga Wagga, Australia
  • Walla Walla, Idaho, USA
  • How many G’s?
    The rate of advance of cellular technology can be dizzying and it can be tricky to which G came when, we’ve devised a new type of infographic a “graph” to show just what order network generations arrived.

    More to follow.

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