AT&T launches 5G for consumers in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and 8 other cities

AT&T’s consumer 5G network launches today, with the network going live in 10 cities and the $1,300 Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G officially on sale. AT&T previously made 5G available to select business users in a few markets around the country, but today is the first time consumers have the option of signing up. 5G is now available to AT&T customers with compatible phones in Birmingham, AL; Indianapolis, IN; Los Angeles, CA; Milwaukee, WI; Pittsburgh, PA; Providence, RI; Rochester, NY; San Diego, CA; San Francisco, CA; and San Jose, CA.

The network launched today utilizes low-band 850MHz spectrum technology that has broader range but slower speeds than the fastest 5G service available from Verizon and to AT&T’s business customeres (which uses mmWave). The advantage to the low-band technology is that the coverage is much better, but it won’t be as fast as Verizon’s 5G service.

The company has also promised that “low-band 5G availability will continue to rapidly expand,” listing Boston, MA; Bridgeport, CT; Buffalo, NY; Las Vegas, NV; Louisville, KY; and New York City as being next on the list for launch in 2020.

Qualcomm stock rise as Apple will be going 5G

On Wednesday the 11th after the BofA Global research said it was optimistic over the technology companies as Qualcomm is prospects to be selling 5G chipsets to Apple.


Qualcomm stock was up 2.6%, to $86.30, near midday Wednesday. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 0.2%.

The analyst said that starting next year, if all iPhone models include 5G capabilities, Apple could contribute nearly $4 billion in cumulative sales to Qualcomm by the fiscal year 2022. His model assumes $20 per Qualcomm 5G modem sold to Apple.

FCC launches auction of more spectrum that can be used for 5G

The Federal Communications Commission has launched its latest spectrum action, which makes available the next batch of high frequency millimeter wavelengths. The auction encompasses 3,400MHz of spectrum with licenses in the upper 37GHz, 39GHz and 47GHz bands, which are vital for 5G. These high frequencies allow for the speed and low-latency that make 5G such an improvement over 4G.

“These airwaves will be critical in deploying 5G services and applications,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement. “Auctioning the 39 GHz and upper 37 GHz bands together presents a critical opportunity for 5G deployment as it represents the largest amount of contiguous spectrum available in the millimeter-wave bands.”

AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon, as well as satellite provider Dish Network, have filed to participate in the auction. The providers will likely bid for several rounds, with the auction expected to complete early next year.

5G in 2019 underwhelmed. Here’s how 2020 should be different

In 2018 Qualcomm met with hundreds of reporters and analysts on the sunny beaches of Maui to talk about how 5G would change the world in 2019-2020. The hype level was high. Then, reality hit. Network rollouts were met with delays, you needed a map to find coverage and consumers ended up more confused than excited.

5G promises to significantly increase cellular the speeds, coverage and responsiveness of wireless networks. It can run 10 to 100 times faster than a typical cellular connection that is offered today, and it’ll also boost how fast a device will connect to the network with speeds as quick as a millisecond to start your download or upload. It’s the most significant advance in mobile network technology since the introduction of 4G a decade ago, and it could have major implications for how we live.

But for now, a lot of those promises remain unfulfilled. That hasn’t deterred Amon’s enthusiasm for the technology.
“You could argue that 200 million could be conservative, especially looking at China,” Amon said in an interview with CNET on Tuesday.
That’s an ambitious declaration for a technology that’s really just getting started. Even in Hawaii, at the Snapdragon Tech Summit, there are some doubts. “I don’t think it’s going to be mainstream,” said Creative Strategies analyst Carolina Milanesi. “But by the end of 2020, we will have a better feel for what living in a 5G world would look like.”

First T-Mobile 5G reviews report performance compared to LTE

T-Mobile’s nationwide 5G service went live on Friday, and reports and reviews from early adopters are now rolling in.

While T-Mobile has promoted that their 5G service will be significantly faster than LTE (although not as fast as Verizon’s or AT&T’s 5G service, due to the frequencies being used), initial reports indicate that the real-world performance may not actually be dramatically better than LTE. A reviewer from CNET testing the service in New York City reported 5G download speeds between 20Mbps and 50Mbps, with some peaks above 100Mbps, but noted that his LTE speeds at the same locations were very similar. Their tester in Maui reported slightly more exciting results, regularly seeing 5G download speeds 100Mbps with peaks of 256Mbps, while their LTE speeds averaged lower and peaked at just 131Mbps.

For comparison, users of Verizon’s 5G network in New York often see speeds of 1Gbps outdoors. However, the coverage is poor and users can only access that type of service in a very limited range. T-Mobile’s 5G coverage and building penetration is much better, with users reporting similar 5G speeds indoors vs outdoors and no trouble maintaining connection as they moved around town.

T-Mobile’s 5G coverage seems to be living up to the company’s promises, which is a big advantage over other carriers. With regard to speed, though, it may not be worth upgrading from an LTE device just yet.

AT&T and Verizon agree to change their eSIM practices

Two years ago, the Department of Justice launched an investigation into whether Verizon, AT&T, and the GSM Association worked together to limit eSIM technology (electronic, or embedded SIM ). The New York Times reports that the Department of Justice is closing the investigation as they have found no evidence of wrongdoing.

The DOJ was initially concerned that AT&T and Verizon attempted to lock devices on their networks even if the device had an eSIM. But the parties have agreed to change how they determine standards for eSIM, which will allow consumers to use eSIM to switch carriers, rather than having to insert a new SIM card. And as a result, the Department of Justice is dropping the investigation.

Amazon Web Services partners with Verizon for AWS Wavelength

Amazon Web Services Inc. (AWS), part of Amazon.com, has announced their latest service: AWS Wavelength, which will give developers the ability to build applications for end-users with single-digit millisecond latencies over 5G. Wavelength incorporates the power of AWS with the advantage of Verizon’s 5G network, so developers can segment out the parts of their application that require ultra-low latency within the 5G network, and connect back to the rest of their application running in AWS. Applications requiring the lowest possible latency include things like smart cars, virtual reality, and autonomous equipment and vehicles.

AWS has partnered with Verizon to make AWS Wavelength available in the U.S. and Wavelength is available not as a pilot project to select users in Chicago. Other 5G providers have been selected to work with AWS to bring Wavelength to other parts of the world.

“With Wavelength, we bring 5G and cloud together to give our customers the powerful new capability to run cloud services consistently within a few milliseconds of mobile end-users,” said Matt Garman, AWS Vice President Compute Services. “This is a game changer for developers that is going to unlock a whole new generation of applications and services. We are really excited to see our customers innovate with these unique new capabilities that they did not have access to before.”

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T-Mobile launches 600MHz 5G across the USA, but no one can use it until December 6th

T-Mobile has flipped the switch on its 5G network, setting it live over areas of the USA that it says covers 200 million people. While the network is supposedly online today, no one is going to be using it until the 6th of December as the first two phones to support it go on sale this Friday.

The “nationwide” 5G deployment relies on a slower form of 5G, using T-Mobile’s 600MHz spectrum. This “low-band” 5G essentially takes airwaves like the ones used for LTE and bundles them together with some new technology to deliver faster throughput speeds.

AT&T launching real 5G in 5 cities in early December

AT&T has made splashes about 5G in the past by showing customers a “5GE” icon on their phone (which is still just LTE service) and by launching their mmWave 5G+ service, which is available only to businesses and has very limited coverage. Now they are finally ready to bring true 5G service to customers, with the announcement that they will launch 5G in five cities this December.

Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, Providence, Rochester, and San Diego are the lucky cities that will be getting AT&T 5G in December. Customers in those markets will need a Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G phone activated on one of two unlimited plans in order to use the service.

AT&T has also promised to launch 5G in 10 more cities by February of 2020: Birmingham, Boston, Bridgeport, Buffalo, Las Vegas, Louisville, Milwaukee, New York, San Francisco, and San Jose.

Read more and see the coverage map

Trump encourages Apple to help develop 5G infrastructure

President Donald Trump said today he met with Apple CEO Tim Cook to request that he help develop telecommunications infrastructure for 5G networks in the U.S.

“They have it all – Money, Technology, Vision & Cook!” Trump tweeted.

Trump has said before that the United States intended to deploy 5G services quickly and that they plan to cooperate with “like-minded nations” to promote security in 5G networks. Mobile operators need to upgrade their networks with 5G gear, mostly made by China’s Huawei Technologies, who is currently not in favor with the US government. The United States has been asking other countries not to grant Huawei access to future 5G networks, citing spying concerns.

Congress is considering legislation that would authorize up to $1 billion for smaller wireless providers to replace network equipment from Huawei and ZTE, citing national security concerns. Development and investment from Apple into 5G infrastructure would provide an alternative to the manufacturers the US is hoping to avoid having to allow.