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Verizon completes first 5G NR call with Nokia and Qualcomm


© Flickr/cc-licence/Portal GDA

  • Test used 3GPP Rel-15 standards compliant technology
  • Nokia provided its AirScale and AirFrame products
  • Qualcomm provided its mmWave 5G NR smartphone prototype
  • Verizon intends to deploy 5G technology this year

Verizon says it is the first network operator to conduct an over-the-air call on a 3GPP-compliant 5G NR system using licensed spectrum. The test was conducted over Verizon’s mmWave spectrum using Nokia 5G network technology on a 5G NR prototype device provided by Qualcomm Technologies. Whilst only announced this morning, it was actually conducted earlier this month at Nokia’s facility in Murray Hill, New Jersey and follows prior interoperability testing between Nokia and Qualcomm.

“With this first 3GPP NR standards-based connection, Verizon continues to lead the development of 5G technology,” said Ed Chan, SVP 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 vendor’s AirScale baseband and radio, AirFrame server and AirScale Cloud RAN. It also used Qualcomm’s 5G NR mmWave prototype device, which includes an optimized mmWave RF front-end design in a smartphone form factor.

“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.”

“Qualcomm Technologies is committed to supporting the launch of standard-based commercial 5G networks and products beginning in 2019,” said Joe Glynn, VP of business development, Qualcomm Technologies. “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 adds that its deployment of 5G technology over mmWave spectrum will begin later this year.

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