Australian operator Optus launched a dual-band 5G network in Sydney using the 2300MHz and 3500MHz bands, with plans to extend coverage to Melbourne in the coming weeks.

The operator said it is testing Samsung Galaxy S20 5G devices on the dual-band network, which it claimed in a world first. The network uses Ericsson’s 5G Radio System equipment and Optus said initial findings indicate it has the potential to increase capacity and coverage.

In a statement, Kent Wu, head of network access planning and quality at Optus, said the operator would continue to “test and implement new ways of enhancing our 5G network”, as it moves forward with deployment.

Wu said the implementation of a dual-band 5G network will improve average speeds and reduce download times to ensure user experiences are more reliable, particularly during peak times.

Yesterday (27 February) rival Telstra said it was preparing for trials in the 26GHz band, working with Ericsson and Qualcomm to test the mmWave spectrum, which allows greater capacity in high-density areas.

Telstra said it will layer several frequencies together to deliver 5G’s potential for high speeds, low latency and high capacity. Its 5G network is currently running on the 3600MHz band.