Qualcomm demonstrates practical 5G (NR) speed at MWC 2018

The real-world conditions testing was conducted in San-Fransisco and Frankfurt.


Back in December last year, the 3GPP – the organization behind standardization of cellular technology had officially signed off on the first specification for 5G. The organization termed the next-gen technology as the 5G “NR” (New Radio) just like how the existing 4G network is referred to as LTE (Long-Term Evolution). Qualcomm, the renowned smartphone chipset and modem maker has now conducted an experiment basically testing the real-world speed on a 5G network.

Qualcomm focused on knowing the real-world potential of the initial standard of 5G, i.e non-standalone 5G-NR. Rather than coining a theoretical speed of beyond Gigabit on 5G, Qualcomm really needs to know how the network will be available for the end-users/consumers. For that to acheive, the firm modeled real-world conditions in Frankfurt and San Fransisco, based on the location of existing cell sites and spectrum allocations in the two cities. All in all, simulated a real-world situations in each city separately for carrying out the demonstration.

To much surprise, the test yielded much positive outcomes, literally conveying the bright and fast, futuristic 5G network. Qualcomm will be releasing the tests details at MWC 2018. Meanwhile, results obtained from the both cities are as follows:

Frankfurt Simulation

The Frankfurt simulation is considered to be on a more basic network spectrum. It’s based on 100 MHz of 3.5GHz spectrum with an underlying gigabit-LTE network on 5 LTE spectrum bands. But the results are as per the expectations. With considerable improvement while both browsing and downloading the 5G network proved to be many folds faster than the LTE/LTE-A.

Browsing speed were approximately seen 7times fold faster than in existing 4G network. Download speeds also improved considerably, with over 90 percent of users seeing at least 100 Mbps download speeds on 5G, versus 8 Mbps on LTE. That is, roughly 11×4G speed.

San-Francisco Simulation

The test conducted here yielded mouth-watering speed on 5G. Perhaps, a better scenario than the Frankfurt Simulation, which itself is impressive. Qualcomm modeled a network operating in 800 MHz of 28 GHz mm Wave spectrum, built on top of a gigabit-LTE network on four licensed LTE bands in addition to License Assisted Access (LAA) bands.

Browsing speeds were out of the world 1.4 Gbps for the median 5G users compared to 71 Mbps for the median 4G users. Not over, the download speeds obtained will leave you wondering, 90 percent of users acheived at least 10 Mbps all the way to huge 186 Mbps on 5G, with the median speed clocking in at 442 Mbps. Mind blowing isn’t it?

Well, though the Qualcomm’s simulation results seems to be promising, it’s to be seen how exactly same the case will be when the 5G starts widely avaliable all over the world. Of course, depening on the service provider, region of operation and government regulations, the 5G speed will be limited on servicing.