T-Mobile released a video today showing an unreleased and unknown phone running over the carrier’s LTE network at a speed of nearly 1Gbps. According to the carrier’s CTO Neville Ray, T-Mobile was able to achieve this speed using three carrier aggregation, 4 x 4 MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) and 256 QAM.
MIMO increases data speed by adding more connections between a cell site and a customer’s phone. QAM increases the number of bits per transmission, increasing data speeds. Carrier aggregation allows carriers to join together multiple spectrum channels to increase the size of the “pipe,” increasing capacity and speed. Think about how much faster your commute is in the morning when there is a holiday and fewer people are going to work. It is not a perfect analogy, but close enough.
According to Ray, this feat was accomplished in a lab. “This is the fastest speed possible on a mobile device today and T-Mobile will absolutely be first to Gigabit speeds!,” said the executive, posting on T-Mobile’s media relations website. Taking a cue from his boss, Ray also knocked Verizon, AT&T and Sprint for various things. Verizon was called out for making a big deal about its LTE Advanced service. According to T-Mobile’s CTO, the main technology behind it, carrier aggregation, has been employed by T-Mobile since 2014. Sprint was taken to task for having an LTE network 40% slower on downloads than T-Mobile, and 60% slower on uploads.
T-Mobile also released a video teasing a 2020 launch of 5G. As T-Mobile’s Technical chief pointed out, so many things are possible now thanks to 4G and the same will happen when 5G launches. Based on T-Mobile’s video, we will see features like AR Navigation, Instant Translation, Real Time pricing comparisons, and more. While testing 5G, T-Mobile hasalready demonstrated mobile data speeds as fast as 1.8Gbps using 8 x 8 MIMO.
“The truth is that 5G is about all the as-yet-unimagined possibilities of mobile technology. We see 5G completely transforming the mobile Internet and delivering brilliant breakthroughs. We see a 5G future where every major tech trend that sparks our imaginations – mobile VR, AR, AI and more – will all be made better and available on-the-go because of 5G. Just as 4G spawned the mobile-first Internet and gave rise to applications and devices that have changed how we live, work and play, 5G will unlock experiences we can’t yet imagine. We’ve already demonstrated mobile speeds of 1.8 Gbps, fixed speeds of 12 Gbps with latency under 2 milliseconds, 8×8 MIMO and four simultaneous 4k video streams.”-Neville Ray, CTO, T-Mobile