Japanese mobile operator NTT DOCOMO has announced that it will conduct experimental trials of what it deems to be ‘5G’ technology with six equipment vendors, namely: Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Fujitsu, NEC, Nokia and Samsung. The parallel trials will seek to establish the potential of the next-generation technology to exploit frequency bands above 6GHz and increase access network capacity per unit. Further, the companies will also trial new radio technologies to support diverse types of applications including machine-to-machine (M2M) services.
The 5G platform, which NTT DOCOMO plans to launch on a commercial basis in 2020, is expected to enable ultra-high speed data transmissions of more than 10Gbps, which represents a 1,000-fold increase in the capacity of existing 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks. NTT DOCOMO will begin indoor trials at its Research and Development (R&D) Centre in Yokosuka, which is located in the Kanagawa Prefecture, later this year, with outdoor field trials planned for 2015. Key findings and achievements will be shared with research institutes to contribute towards 5G standardisation, which is expected to commence from 2016.