Telecommunication company, AT&T, wants to start off the new year by becoming the first US carrier to offer next-generation 5G mobile internet. The service will reportedly roll out somewhere in the latter part of 2018. This latest announcement would pit the telecommunications giant directly against its rival, Verizon Communications, and T-Mobile US, who are also looking for ways to upgrade their networks.
While AT&T didn’t specify how the speedy data transfer will occur, they did say that the new mobile service will become available in more than a dozen US cities. The company hopes that this upgrade will offer and enhance experiences like virtual reality, future driverless cars, and 4K video to name a few.
“We’re moving quickly to being deploying mobile 5G this year and start unlocking the future of connectivity for consumers and businesses,” said Melissa Arnoldi, president of AT&T Technology and Operations on Thursday.
The company’s announcement seems optimistic, and it may seem that AT&T wanted to get ahead of its rivals by being the first company to officially confirm 5G services. More so, the statement does not offer any clues as to what markets the mobile 5G will be offered, nor on what phones the service will work. Aside from this, there is also the issue of achieving a stable and speedy connection that is not blocked by trees or rain. 5G technology also requires hefty spending into device manufacturers, chipmakers, and software developers. This would require mobile-phone companies to spend around $200 billion per year in research and capital expenses to achieve what AT&T promised this year.
AT&T said that it already paved the way for their upcoming 5G service through network upgrades in 23 cities including Kalamazoo, Michigan; South Bend, Indiana; Waco and Austin, Texas. The telecom giant has also revealed its plans on testing 5G technology with businesses.
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