The 5G standard has yet to be defined and 5G handsets are yet to hit the market.
In a significant boost to connectivity, AT&T has disclosed that it will be launching its ultra-high speed 5G wireless services in Austin and Indianapolis, sometime this year.
Although, the technology is in its infancy, AT&T is confident enough to meet expectations of providing peek download speeds of at least 400Mbps, if not faster.
Regardless of its impending launch of 5G wireless services, there is still room to grow in the current 4G technology using carrier aggregation and other techniques which could boost speeds upto 1Gbps in “some areas”, said AT&T.
This rollout forms part of a larger upgradation of its network, which has been nicknamed as Indigo. The upgradation could make AT&T’s network more response and more adaptable since it emphasises on software-shaped networking using sophisticated techniques like machine learning.
Almost 75% of its network will be upgraded by 2020.
Incidentally, AT&T has even made its ECOMP, the code for its network’s orchestration platform, open source.
While this is exciting news, however don’t expect to walk into a mobile store to buy a 5G smartphone. For one thing, there is still no 5G standard. Secondly, new cellular wireless technologies tend to launch with very limited hardware choices, so it would be prudent to wait and watch until the technology matures.