AT&T has announced that it has launched its second fixed-wireless 5G trial, in Austin, Texas, in association with Ericsson and Intel. Using Ericsson’s 5G RAN and the Intel ‘5G Mobile Trial Platform’, AT&T says that it is now delivering an ultra-fast internet connection to residential, small business and enterprise locations. Trial participants get access to faster broadband services and can stream live TV via the DIRECTV NOW service, over a fixed-wireless 5G signal. AT&T anticipates that the trial will provide speeds up to 1Gbps using millimetre wave (mmWave) spectrum. Although 5G standards are still being finalised, AT&T is working with the aforementioned vendor duo to ensure that it is ready to deliver 5G services as early as late 2018.
In a parallel announcement, AT&T has confirmed that it will conduct a 10Gbps XGS-PON field trial in late-2017, and is moving forward with plans to virtualise access functions within the last mile network. The next-generation PON trial will aim to give consumer and business customers access to multi-Gigabit broadband speeds. The ultimate goal is to support the merging of all services on a single network, including 5G wireless infrastructure, the telco notes.