Arqiva and Samsung kick of Fixed Wireless Access trial

Arqiva and Samsung has kicked off what the pair claim is the first field trial of 5G Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) technology in the UK.

The primary objective of the test is to demonstrate the stability of the FWA service, and its potential as a fast-to-market and cost-effective alternative to fibre for connectivity to homes and businesses. The pair has said the system has established a stable two-way mmWave link with downlink speeds of around 1 Gbps at the CPE, despite travelling a link distance of several hundred meters.

“One of the most exciting prospects that 5G is expected to bring to the table is the exploration of powerful new use cases outside of traditional smart device mobile connectivity,” said Paul Kyungwhoon Cheun, Head of the Next Generation Communications Business Team at Samsung Electronics and owner of one of the longest jobs titles we’ve come across.

“Our trial efforts with Arqiva give us the chance to demonstrate this first hand, and we view this demonstration as a door-opener for new and compelling connected service opportunities in the UK, Europe and worldwide”

A Radio Access Unit, located on the rooftop of Arqiva’s London office, wirelessly links to a CPE, located by a window inside Arqiva’s nearby headquarters. Samsung’s system makes use of beam-forming technology and high-frequency mmWave spectrum to provide high bandwidth connectivity. The compact access unit can be mounted on lampposts or similar street furniture to provide gigabit-per-second service to neighbourhoods and businesses alike, the pair claim. The final component is Samsung’s virtualized core which runs on Arqiva’s data centre servers.

“We’ve seen a great level of response so far from our entire customer base, including leading mobile operators, fixed broadband providers, broadcasters and media companies,” said Simon Beresford-Wylie, CEO of Arqiva. “This trial will be particularly interesting for this audience as it looks to a future of ubiquitous UHD, and the file sizes that go with it.”

The trial will run over the next four months, and consists of a series of six stations. Part of the trial will include examples of 5G use cases, demonstrations of 4K UHD and Virtual Reality content streaming.

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