The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted Apple and other companies a license to conduct trials of the emerging fifth-generation (5G) wireless broadband standard.
According to DSLReports yesterday, the Cupertino technology giant has been granted an experimental license to test millimeter-wave 5G technology in two locations near its offices in Cupertino, where it is headquartered, and nearby Milpitas, California.
Apple’s application makes particular reference to using the 28 and 39 GHz bands, which the FCC approved for commercial use for 5G services last year.
5G transmits at higher frequencies and a smaller wavelength of between 30 GHz and 300 GHz, which helps reduce network latency while boosting data throughput to up to 10Gb/s.
Apple’s application states:
Apple Inc. seeks to assess cellular link performance in direct path and multi-path environments between base station transmitters and receivers using this spectrum.
These assessments will provide engineering data relevant to the operation of devices on wireless carriers’ future 5G networks.
The 28GHz band is earmarked for earth-to-space transmissions.
This is interesting in light of an April report alleging the Cupertino company was recruiting satellite experts for a secret hardware team.
Starry, Google, Facebook and major US cellular carriers are also conducting 5G trials. Verizon and AT&T will start rolling out their 5G networks to major markets later this year.
T-Mobile and Sprint both hope to have 5G towers up and running by 2020 because the 5G standard still hasn’t been fully fleshed out. Apple filed its application with the FCC for an experimental license to use the emerging wireless technology on May 23, 2017.