Nokia claims mmWave speed/distance record

In a test environment, Finnish kit vendor Nokia says it not only broke a 5G speed world record but did so over a relatively long distance.

The bad news with millimetre wave (mmWave) is that it has rubbish propagation (range, penetration, etc) characteristics. The good news is that there’s plenty of it, which enables high bandwidth in the event that it makes it from A to B. It is noteworthy, therefore, when that bandwidth promise is realised over a significant distance.

At the OuluZone test facility in Oulu, Finland (i.e. not a real-world, commercial environment), Nokia managed a 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) downlink speed of 2.1 Gbps, and an uplink speed of 57.2 Mbps over a distance of 10.86 kilometres. That speed is apparently a world record and it seems safe to assume that the speed/distance ratio is a new record too.

“We just set a new speed record for extended range 5G mmWave,” said Ari Kynäslahti, Head of Strategy and Technology at Nokia Mobile Networks.” This demonstrates that mmWave solutions will be an essential building block for operators to efficiently deliver widespread, multi-gigabit 5G broadband coverage to their customers in urban, suburban, and rural areas, complementing sub-6 GHz spectrum assets.”

Nokia used 800 MHz of 24 GHz spectrum to achieve this feat. The piece of contributing kit it’s most keen to highlight is the Nokia FastMile 5G PoC CPE, some of the qualities of which you can see explained in the video below. Apparently this pre-commercial unit is currently being trailed by operators and, if it gets close to this kind of speed/distance performance in the wild, could be a significant contributor to the booming FWA market.


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