Media reported that Nokia had just broken the 5G rate record at its North American headquarters research and development laboratory in Dallas. With eight 100MHz channels in the 28GHz and 39GHz mmWave bands, it has successfully shot out at 4.7Gbps under the OTA network. The test is known to have been conducted on the AirScale Radio base station platform being deployed by large U.S. carriers and was achieved through a combination of RAN virtualization and traditional baseband configurations.
Specifically, Nokia uses dual-connect (EN-DC) technology to aggregate 800MHz of bandwidth (28GHz plus 39GHz mmWave), supplemented by 40MHz in the LTE band.
A company spokesman said the devices tested were equipped with the latest version of the chipset from major suppliers in the industry and would soon be deployed on end-user-oriented commercial devices.
With EN-DC technology, devices can connect to both 5G and LTE networks for higher data throughput. But another test earlier this year, which achieved a downlink rate of 3Gbps, has been achieved.
Through software upgrades (EN-DC dual connections and MU-MIMO multi-user multi-input multi-output), Nokia and Sprint increased the 5G channel capacity of the 2.5GHz spectrum fourfold in the lab.
The vendor says its commercial AirScale solution allows operators to sell different services to different businesses, such as network slices for mission-critical applications and higher rates for the average mobile user.
Although Nokia went through a difficult period last year, a spokesman did not name any of its partners, saying the earlier tests were done independently by it.
In mid-February, Ericsson announced that it had achieved a 5G rate of 4.3Gbps through an 800MHz mmwave aggregation scheme in interoperability testing of commercial equipment.
Later that month, Verizon partnered with Samsung and Qualcomm to achieve a 5G rate of 4.2Gbps on the 28GHz mmwave band through an eight-way carrier aggregation scheme.
Verizon executives said at the time that the company was on track to make the technology widely available by 2020.
On the business side, Nokia says it has won 70 5G commercial contracts worldwide, 43 of which have been made public.
The Finnish supplier won Unicom’s 5G Core and IMS virtualization contracts last month, despite some setbacks with Ericsson in the Chinese market.