Australian operator Optus has completed what it claims to be the world’-s first 2.3 GHz + 3.5 GHz 5G non-standalone carrier aggregation call, the company said in a release.
The call — made in Sydney, in collaboration with Ericsson and using Samsung’s Galaxy S20 5G handset — demonstrated the benefits of using both spectrum frequencies simultaneously.
Optus expects to offer a 5G dual-band network in Sydney and Melbourne later this year.
“5G Carrier Aggregation is a significant technology milestone that provides us with the ability to combine two spectrum frequencies to improve and extend the coverage, speed and capacity of our 5G network,” said Lambo Kanagaratnam, Optus’ managing director of networks.
“When using carrier aggregation, customers will see an improved experience when using data hungry applications and services, such as high-resolution video streaming, AR/VR and downloading large files. It will also ensure that when our 5G network is in high demand and being used by many customers simultaneously, that these applications run seamlessly,” according to Optus.
“We are ambitious in our 5G network rollout and together with our technology partner, Ericsson, this testing has further demonstrated how carrier aggregation can and will play an important role in optimizing the capacity of our network,” Kanagaratnam added.
Martin Wiktorin, head of Ericsson Singapore, Brunei and Philippines and the Singtel global customer unit, said. “Ericsson is pleased to be working with Optus in deploying 5G TDD-TDD carrier aggregation on 5G NSA. 5G TDD-TDD carrier aggregation on 5G NSA allows Optus to combine its mid-band spectrum to deliver its customers higher 5G peak speeds and is an important step towards building Optus’ 5G network.”
Optus’ 5G network currently operates 900 live sites and is available to more than 426,000 households across Australia.
In July, Optus announced it was testing 5G mmWave technology in partnership with Ericsson.
Optus noted that mmWave technology will enable higher speed and reduced latency for its customers, especially in highly dense areas with large demand for the Optus mobile network.
Optus has approval from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to operate and test mmWave technology using the 26 GHz band at four locations in Sydney, including its Macquarie Park headquarters.
In January, Optus successfully implemented spectrum sharing technology from Ericsson to made an end-to-end 5G video test call while simultaneously streaming video content on a 4G device. The Optus network was able to assign spectrum resources on both 4G and 5G switching between them in milliseconds to support the different service video demands from both users, Optus said. Dynamic Spectrum Sharing is a technology that allows an operator use the same spectrum at the same time for LTE and 5G, with the network base stations controlling the allocation of spectrum.
In addition, Optus had previously announced the general availability of its 5G Home fixed wireless service across the 138,000 home footprint covered by its 5G network.
Optus is controlled by Singapore telecommunications group Singtel.