& cplSiteName &

Samsung: Inching Toward 5G?

Dan Jones
5/13/2013
50%
50%

Samsung is claiming a "5G" breakthrough this Monday with a 1-Gbit/s test in South Korea.

The South Korean device giant says it's using microwave spectrum combined with a "64 element" adaptive array antenna to improve the notorious signal propagation characteristics of the high-frequency bands. Samsung says it is using millimeter wave technology that will eventually allow it to develop base stations that can deliver tens of gigabits of data per second over the air.

What can and can't be called fifth generation (5G) wireless technology is even more up in the air than the meaning of 4G right now. At least the ITU had an initial requirement that 4G systems should be able to deliver 1-Gbit/s downloads to a stationary user, even if changed its mind later. [Ed note: Oh hey, maybe Samsung has actually created the first real 4G technology?]

Here's what we know so far:

Samsung held a trial in South Korea where it wirelessly transmitted data at 1Gbit/s over a distance of 2 kilometers. It plans to have the technology commercially available in 2020.

We don't know yet which radio interface technology was used, or whether this was a mobile or stationary test.

We do know that Samsung used a band commonly utilized for fixed-wireless microwave transmissions for the test. Plenty of vendors already claim 1-Gbit/s speeds for stationary microwave links. Millimeter wave technology in the upper band has also started to become interesting for small cell backhaul applications.

Nonetheless, the 28Ghz band (and those above) has traditionally been seen as spectrum that isn't much use for mobile communications, since these upper bands are very susceptible to rain fade and other issues.

Samsung says things are different with millimeter wave (mmWave), which rides on the space between the microwave transmissions. Using its 64 element antenna -- and likely a hefty dose of antenna gain -- overcomes the range and propagation issues in the upper bands, Samsung claims.

The 64 antenna elements used suggests that the test equipment derives its speed from an 8x8 multiple input multiple out (MIMO) antenna array. Vendors are looking at 2x2 MIMO arrays for LTE-Advanced, so this would be a significant step forward, while promising chip vendors and device manufacturers more miniaturization challenges for future mobile gadgets.

While I hate to rain (fade) on anyone's parade, we've been down this road before. There have been plenty of attempts to overcome the issues of high-band radios with hybrid systems and the like. It will be interesting to see how far Samsung can take this technology and what kind of bumps lie on the foggy road ahead.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
DanJonesLRMobile
50%
50%
DanJonesLRMobile,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/15/2013 | 3:29:11 PM
re: Samsung: Inching Toward 5G?
Yeah, that's why I thought it was interesting. People just reported it as forget 4G, here's 5G, but I was looking at the Samsung page on it and not seeing a great leap forward, maybe just an evolution of what's already in Release 10 and some different bands being used.
More Blogs from Jonestown
Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon eye NB-IoT in 2018, while AT&T is full-bore on Cat M for now.
Forget 5G! For early adopters, Gigabit LTE will be coming of age in the US at Mobile World Congress in San Francisco this month.
Apple's 5G tests are still at a very early stage.
It's really hard to tell right now.
Doughnuts get the delivery drone treatment in Denver, because... of course they do.
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue – London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 16, 2017, ExCel Centre, London
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Muni Policies Stymie Edge Computing
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/17/2017
Pai's FCC Raises Alarms at Competitive Carriers
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
Is US Lurching Back to Monopoly Status?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
'Brutal' Automation & the Looming Workforce Cull
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/18/2017
Worried About Bandwidth for 4K? Here Comes 8K!
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 10/17/2017
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed