US mobile operator Sprint has confirmed that its ‘standards-based 5G’ network is now on-air in downtown Chicago where the company is testing and optimising its deployment of standards-based 5G software and hardware using Massive MIMO radios from Samsung Electronics America. A commercial service is expected to launch in May, with Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas and Kansas City likely to be among the first cities to offer commercial 5G services. Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, Phoenix and Washington DC are also slated for launch in the first half of 2019.
Sprint CTO Dr John Saw commented: ‘Wireless customers are soon going to have their first mobile 5G experience with Sprint, and it won’t be limited to their home or a millimetre wave hotspot. Real 5G is now on-air in Chicago, marking a major milestone for the commercialisation of Sprint 5G using 2.5GHz [spectrum] and Massive MIMO to provide fast speeds and true mobility.’