Verizon is the first network provider to conduct an over-the-air call on a 3GPP-compliant 5G New Radio (NR) system using licensed spectrum. This successful test on Verizon’s millimeter wave spectrum – using Nokia 5G network technology on a 5G NR prototype device provided by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated – was an important milestone on the road to preparing Verizon’s network for widespread implementation of commercial 5G mobile services for consumers and enterprises.
The test was conducted this month at Nokia’s facility in Murray Hill, NJ and follows prior interoperability testing between Nokia and Qualcomm Technologies. The 5G NR standard was approved by the 3GPP in December 2017.
“With this first 3GPP NR standards-based connection, Verizon continues to lead the development of 5G technology,” said Ed Chan, senior vice president and chief technology architect, Corporate Network & Technology, Verizon. “By partnering with Nokia and Qualcomm to combine 5G technology with our deep millimeter wave spectrum, we’re well on the way to being the first to usher in the next era of wireless communications for customers.”
The test was completed over Nokia’s CloudRAN solution, which is comprised of the Nokia AirScale baseband and radio, AirFrame server, and AirScale Cloud RAN running 5G NR 3GPP-compliant software.
“Nokia’s 3GPP-compliant high-capacity 5G solution supports pioneering operators like Verizon in leveraging their assets to make a true difference with 5G for their customers,” said Marc Rouanne, president of Mobile Networks, Nokia. “Using the successful interoperability testing we conducted with Qualcomm as a basis, we’re now applying our standard-compliant 5G technology in this trial with Verizon to push the commercialization of 5G.”
The test utilized Qualcomm Technologies’ cutting-edge 5G NR millimeter wave prototype device, which includes an optimized millimeter wave RF front-end design in a smartphone form factor.
“Qualcomm Technologies is committed to supporting the launch of standard-based commercial 5G networks and products beginning in 2019,” said Joe Glynn, vice president of business development, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The successful completion of standard-compliant 5G NR millimeter wave testing with leading mobile industry innovators such as Nokia and Verizon prove that we are well on the path to making this a reality.”
Verizon’s deployment of 5G technology over millimeter wave spectrum – beginning in 2018 – will provide massive bandwidth, ultra-high speed and single digit latency for emerging fixed and mobile use cases. As 5G continues to evolve, and as new use cases are developed and deployed, Verizon will be well positioned to deliver the capabilities those use cases call for to become a commercially viable solution.