Samsung and KDDI have demonstrated that 5G signals can be picked up by cars traveling at speeds north of 124mph.
The demo involved an experimental 5G base station using the 28GHz radio frequency band, mounted to a car accelerating from 0-127mph on the Everland Speedway race track in Yongin, South Korea.
The vehicle passed multiple track-side base stations, allowing researchers to measure the performance of Samsung’s end-to-end millimeter wave (mmWave) technology in terms of overall performance and how a device hands over information as it passes between stations.
Previously announced test results have fixated on download speeds. A similar trial in 2014 saw speeds of up to 1.2Gbps recorded by a device mounted in a car travelling at 62mph.
While the actual speeds obtained in this trial are not available, it marks the first time Samsung and KDDI have looked at the wider picture, measuring download and upload speeds, handover interruption, and jitter (the variation in latency).
“It is becoming increasingly important that we accelerate our focus on 5G’s ability to meet a growing number of performance metrics,” said Woojune Kim, Senior Vice President and Head of Next Generation Strategy in Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “Until now, peak bandwidth has been the common refrain, and certainly a big component of the future of 5G. However, the test we conducted with KDDI will help us build a more diverse portfolio of future 5G use cases.”
Roadside tests of 5G prototypes are significant, because the technology will handle communications between automated vehicles, smart roads, and signaling equipment, as well as letting mobile users do things like stream 4K video on the go.
These results follow a real-world test of the same mmWave 5G technology on a Tokyo expressway. Here, a device moving along a road at a speed limit of 37.2mph, handing over between two base stations, achieved a maximum throughput of 3.7Gbps.
The 28GHz band is one that’s increasingly being used in tests of equipment that could eventually form global standards for 5G spectrum and hardware. Those standards aren’t due to be finalized until mid-2018.