Japan’s SoftBank Corp has launched 5G mmWave-based (29GHz) services, using devices based on Qualcomm Snapdragon 5G Mobile/Modem-RF Systems, with the ‘Pocket WiFi 5G A004ZT’ mmWave mobile hotspot now available for sale to SoftBank subscribers. Soon-to-be-announced 5G mmWave-enabled smartphones are also expected to be powered by Qualcomm technology, enabling ‘the fastest possible multi-gigabit download speeds in the country’, according to a press release. The addition of mmWave services comes a year after SoftBank’s March 2020 commercial 5G network launch using sub-6GHz frequency bands, after the operator was issued new spectrum in the 3.9GHz-4.0GHz and 29.1GHz-29.5GHz ranges.
The latest release continued: ‘The deployment of 5G mmWave is critical to unleashing the full potential of 5G and addressing the massive increase in mobile data demand … to deliver the world’s fastest multi-gigabit cellular speeds and low latency connectivity. 5G mmWave is also a cost-effective way for mobile operators to increase the network capacity needed to meet the increasing demand for data in dense urban, fixed wireless access and enterprise environments – with savings up to 35% in total cost of ownership compared to sole use of sub-6GHz bands.’ Keigo Sugano, senior vice president, head of product division, SoftBank Corp, declared: ‘We look forward to continuing our long-standing collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies to support Japan’s growth and leadership using the most advanced wireless innovations.’