Latvian cellco Tele2 has begun what it claims is the first 5G research on the 700MHz band in Latvia, in anticipation of the expected release of the spectrum band to operators in the middle of next year. In a statement, the cellco explained that its study was to test the readiness of 5G telecommunications hardware and devices for the 700MHz band and to evaluate in practice the benefits of using frequencies in that range. Tele2’s test utilised a 10MHz block of spectrum under a short-term permission and achieved downlink speeds of 90Mbps in laboratory conditions and 70Mbps in real world conditions.
Commenting on the move, Tele2 CTO Liga Krumiņa was quoted as saying: ‘The 700MHz band with 5G technologies will allow the development of a wider 5G mobile network coverage throughout the territory of Latvia, as the greatest value of this frequency is that it is able to transmit a signal over a much wider area, as well as reach indoor devices. This is critically important for the further development of mobile communications, as it will improve the mobile internet experience for the population, as well as ensure much wider and better communication between devices.’