AT&T connects world's first live millimeter wave 5G network

5G is continuing to move to reality from hype as a key test confirms.

AT&T disclosed the news in its announcement that it successfully completed "the world's first millimeter wave mobile 5G browsing session with a standards-based device on a mobile 5G network" last night in Waco, Texas. That's the same modem we'll likely see in the first wave of 5G phones next year, so this device could give us a nice taste for what to expect in terms of performance and data speeds on AT&T's network.

"We remain on track to be the first carrier to introduce mobile 5G services in the USA ... including Raleigh", an AT&T spokesperson said.

"The browsing session was on what will be a commercially available 5G device-the Netgear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot", AT&T said.

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In a statement Friday, David Christopher, president of AT&T Mobility and Entertainment, called the latest development "a seminal moment in the advancement of mobile 5G technology".

There's no word on a release date or price for this AT&T 5G peripheral.

AT&T says that it is on track to rollout mobile 5G services to the USA using this Netgear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot to 12 cities this year and to 19 cities in early 2019; other markets will be announced individually. Standards and equipment continue to be developed by AT&T, Verizon and other wireless carriers as well as tech firms.

AT&T has promised to launch mobile 5G services on the 3GPP's specification in a dozen cities by the end of this year. The modem inside the Netgear hotspot is a Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 5G modem; this is the first commercial 5G NR modem with millimeter wave capability.

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