T-Mobile, partners trial SA 5G - Mobile World Live

T-Mobile, partners trial SA 5G

04 MAY 2020

T-Mobile US teamed with top network and handset vendors on a series of standalone (SA) 5G tests to demonstrate end-to-end system readiness, furthering preparations for a commercial launch later this year.

Along with Cisco, Ericsson, MediaTek, Nokia and Qualcomm, T-Mobile claimed several SA 5G milestones, including the first data session between commercial modems from different suppliers; a low-band voice call with LTE fallback; low-band Voice over New Radio (VoNR) call; and Video over New Radio (ViNR) call.

It also completed the first VoNR and ViNR calls using a commercial device, the OnePlus 8.

The news comes as technology vendors battle to claim SA 5G firsts: Huawei was first out of the gates with a VoNR call in May 2019, though Qualcomm and ZTE subsequently claimed the first 3GPP standards-based variant in January.

Last month, Ericsson, MediaTek and Oppo completed voice and video calls using the new architecture.

Rollout
T-Mobile says SA 5G will enable faster speeds and lower latency by eliminating network limitations associated with the use of 4G in non-standalone (NSA) operation.

President of technology Neville Ray stated its trials “mark a huge step forward for the entire wireless ecosystem”.

All tests used T-Mobile’s 600MHz 5G network and newly-built SA core. During testing, SA and NSA 5G devices were able to maintain active sessions simultaneously on the same cell, it said.

Rivals AT&T and Verizon are also pursuing SA rollouts in 2020.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana is Mobile World Live's US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana came to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and CED Magazine, digital-only...

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