Telefonica Deutschland and Nokia have announced the completion of their joint ‘Early 5G Innovation Cluster’ in Berlin, incorporating five sites in the operator’s cellular network in Berlin-Friedrichshain. These sites, equipped with Nokia 5G Airscale radio and Wavence Microwave technology, will be used in the next few months primarily to test and measure the performance and coverage of initial 5G services in a dense urban area. The announcement follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) earlier this year, in which both companies agreed to test network solutions and technologies on the path to 5G. The innovation cluster in Berlin provides a platform to test the performance of Nokia’s 5G technology under real life conditions and subsequently trial specific services with subscribers in Telefonica’s network. It will utilise five carrier aggregation for download and two carrier aggregation for upload to achieve high throughput rates.
In a separate announcement, Telefonica says it has connected more than 1,000 O2 mobile phone sites to Unitymedia’s fibre-optic infrastructure in North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse and Baden-Wurttemberg in preparation for 5G.