Apple has been granted its experimental license to test high-band frequencies in California by the FCC, one of the first obvious 5G moves by the iPhone vendor.
As previously reported, Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) plans to test 28GHz and 39GHz millimeter wave (mmWave) signals in Cupertino and Santa Clara. Millimeter wave (30GHz-300GHz) is expected to be one of the building blocks of 5G, helping operators to deliver gigabit-per-second speeds over the air. (See Apple Looking to Cook 5G Test Devices .)
"Apple Inc. seeks to assess cellular link performance in direct path and multipath environments between base station transmitters and receivers using this spectrum," the company says in the application. The license was granted late last week.
That focus appears to suggest that these trials are early-stage tests of the capabilities of mmWave technology. In other words, it is highly unlikely that Apple will be bursting out of the gate with an mmWave iPhone ahead of Samsung Corp. , which has been working on mmWave for years.
Nonetheless, Apple is now in the 5G race.
— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading