Earlier this month, T-Mobile announced plans to begin trial testing for 5G data speeds on their wireless network. Ericsson reaffirmed those plans in their own statement, going into great detail about their partnership with T-Mobile and how they plan to make 5G a reality. The two companies plan to begin 5G pre-standard trials in the second half of 2016, looking to experiment with several different usage scenarios in order to jump-start development for the upcoming wireless standard.
Both T-Mobile and Ericsson plan to undergo a series of lab and field tests in order to test the efficacy of 5G speeds on T-Mobile's network. The goals of the trials are strictly exploratory in these early stages, but both companies have set clear expectations for what they're looking for once testing commences. Superior upload and download speeds, greater network efficiency, and higher network capacity will be areas of intense focus during the trial phase.
T-Mobile's Chief Technology Officer Neville Ray expressed his excitement about the company's partnership with Ericsson, while also hinting that consumers could see widespread 5G availability sometime around 2020 (or slightly later). His company isn't the only one talking up 5G, however, with Verizon making waves earlier this week by providing information for their own field trials, which are currently underway. The company's marketing team even went so far as to suggest that "5G is Coming", insinuating that the high-speed technology is much closer to commercialization than Ray's cautiously optimistic time-frame. For what it's worth, T-Mobile has warned users that Verizon's 5G claims are greatly exaggerated, urging them to take the company's statements with a grain of salt.
Wireless networks around the world (and especially in America) have made it clear that the arrival of 5G data standards will represent a significant leap in wireless and mobile technologies. The new standard holds the promise of not only providing customers with faster speeds on their mobile devices, but also giving carriers the keys to more reliable and efficient wireless networks. It's not just smartphones and tablets that stand to benefit either. Smarthome systems, digital media boxes, wireless gaming consoles, and wearables continue to grow in popularity. All of these technologies require fast and reliable data connections to function properly, and wireless companies (like T-Mobile) are banking on 5G in order to capitalize on the growing needs of consumers.