Samsung and Verizon Announce First 5G Customer Trials From Q2 2017

Samsung Electronics America and Verizon have completed their deployment of 5G trial systems in five US cities and are now set to begin preparation for the first ever customer trials of the 5G technology. The customer trials, planned to begin in April, will deliver fixed wireless access to customers through 5G connectivity in order to gauge user experiences, evaluate the performance of 5G technologies, and help streamline the delivery of mmWave 5G across various environments.

The trials will involve innovative network systems, including the use of 28 GHz millimeter wave spectrum and advanced beam-forming antenna technology. Samsung’s 5G Access Units, installed throughout a city’s business and residential neighborhoods, will link radio signals to a virtualized core network that will be set up within Verizon’s data centers. Samsung’s next-generation core solution is software-driven and designed on a scalable platform to accommodate operator needs.

In a pre-commercial testing, which began in December 2016, the 5G system demonstrated multi-gigabit throughputs at radio distances of up to 1,500 feet (nearly 500 meters) across each of the different environments selected for the customer trials. The Samsung 5G system is said to be designed to be upgradable to support 3GPP standards for New Radio and Next-Generation Core.

Samsung and Verizon 5G customer trials will begin in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas and Washington, D.C., with a fifth location in Michigan starting trials later in Q2 2017. The locations represent varying terrain, neighborhood layouts and population density. Joint trials will incorporate Samsung’s pre-commercial 5G solution featuring: Customer Premise Equipment (CPE), a window antenna, and its 5G radio and core solutions. Verizon will include fixed wireless network service that provides wireless Internet access and Voice over IP (VoIP) calling.