Satellite player Lynk Global detailed plans to launch a 5G base station into space later this year, a move it described as a world first.

The company noted the 5G test was being funded by an undisclosed partner and the payload is scheduled to launch in December, when it flies its second commercial satellite.

Lynk Global claims to have patented the ability to connect to existing standard 5G devices using space-based infrastructure in 55 countries.

It indicated the latest trial would prove the ability to send a 5G signal from space to regular handsets.

The company received a US licence for its satellite-to-phone service earlier this month which it previously stated would enable it to operate globally.

CCO Dan Dooley stated his company was “years ahead of everyone else” in terms of enabling operators to cover “100 per cent of their geographic territories”.

Dooley added Lynk Global is actively testing its existing service in 12 countries on five continents. Earlier this year, the company disclosed it had contracts with 15 mobile operators covering 36 countries.

Although it is quick to highlight its advanced status, Lynk Global is not the only player to target connection with off-the-shelf handsets.

Vodafone Group-backed AST SpaceMobile is also making a play in this space and signed a deal with Nokia earlier this year covering 4G and 5G kit.

Aside from these rivals there are a plethora of other companies targeting operator contracts for providing mobile connectivity from birds in orbit, while several device manufacturers have started to market early use-cases with their latest smartphones.