2020 Study on AT&T's 5G NR Network – Performance KPIs, NR & LTE Comparative Analysis, Mobility Analysis, Energy Efficiency, User Experience Analysis – PRNewswire


DUBLIN, Feb. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The “5G: The Greatest Show on Earth! Volume 9: Wafer-Thin Mint” report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com’s offering.

The author just completed its ninth 5G benchmark study, this time with a focus on AT&T’s 5G NR network, which is deployed as a 5 MHz FDD carrier in Band n5. For this particular study, the author did the testing over two separate weekends in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Highlights of the Report


The author did this study in collaboration with Accuver Americas, Rohde & Schwarz, and Spirent Communications who provided their respective test equipment and platforms, which they identify in the report. The author is solely responsible for the testing and analysis of the data and is also responsible for the commentary in the report.


The author did drive testing over two different weekends in January, covering AT&T’s published coverage map for Indianapolis. The author’s second trip was done to obtain a better representation of the operator’s actual 5G coverage area. In total, the author transferred well more than 500 GB of data between the two trips.

It’s only Incremental

As one might expect, 2×5 MHz 5G NR doesn’t offer any meaningful improvement in data speeds or the user experience when introduced on top of the operator’s very impressive LTE-A network which supports up to 5CA and LAA. 5G NR peak downlink throughput [PDSCH] was 40.2 Mbps, compared with 494 Mbps(LTE) and 678 Mbps (LTE with LAA). All uplink user data traffic presently goes over LTE.

5G NR was Hard to Find

Although the published coverage map was clearly optimistic, the bigger challenge was getting the smartphone to stop using a low-band LTE frequency and switch to 5G NR. This issue can be addressed through optimization, but the author had to manually turn-off low-band LTE in the Note 10 Plus to help ensure their smartphone used 5G NR when it was available.

Energy Efficiency is a Work in Progress

5G NR still has much higher current requirements than LTE, but unlike millimetre wave deployments, a narrowband 5G NR channel cannot send enough data to offset the higher current.

EN-DC with split bearer functionality was aggressively used

Perhaps out of necessity, the author’s smartphone took full advantage of LTE and 5G NR in most cases (a good thing), although there were instances when the author knew carrier aggregation was available but not used. The combined forces of LTE and 5G NR can benefit the consumer but it can also result in a misleading characterization of 5G NR performance if the results are not analyzed correctly. For reasons explained in the report, a smartphone using 5G NR can actually result in lower total throughput than simply using LTE.

MWC 2020

If you are planning on going to Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona during 24th – 27th February 2020 and you would like to meet, please contact the author and they will try to get something scheduled.

Key Topics Covered

1. Executive Summary
2. Key Observations
3. 5G NR Performance KPIs
4. 5G NR and LTE Comparative Analysis
5. 5G NR Mobility Analysis
6. 5G NR Energy Efficiency
7. 5G NR User Experience Analysis
8. LAA Key Performance Indicators
9. Test Methodology
10. Final Thoughts
11. Appendix

Companies Mentioned

  • AT&T
  • Accuver Americas
  • Rohde & Schwarz
  • Spirent Communications

For more information about this report visit https://www.researchandmarkets.com/r/fd0nij

Research and Markets also offers Custom Research services providing focused, comprehensive and tailored research.

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Research and Markets
Laura Wood, Senior Manager

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SOURCE Research and Markets


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