Telstra revealed an Android firmware update enabled Samsung’s latest top-tier smartphones to access its standalone (SA) 5G network for the first time, more than two years after it deployed the technology.

The operator revealed it would stock Samsung’s Galaxy S22 series earlier this year. Today (7 November) group executive for networks and IT Nikos Katinakis stated an Android 13 firmware update had enabled the models to access Telstra’s SA network.

He noted Telstra’s original 5G launch relied on 4G infrastructure for voice service, adding its SA network uses “built-for-purpose 5G infrastructure at every link along the network chain”, including the RAN and core.

Katinakis added SA 5G offered a “hidden appeal” in terms of “the new features it enables when operating end-to-end on our network, because it creates a better, customised experience for customers”.

One example is networking slicing, which Katinakis stated enabled Telstra to allocate and control bandwidth, storage and data processing power for a particular customer or application on the network.

For consumers, he said SA 5G will improve the user experience in areas including gaming by providing more consistent performance and immersive interactions using AR and VR.