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Verizon trials 5G in Washington DC with Nokia

Verizon and Nokia used a commercial 5G network, mmWave spectrum, and Nokia radio equipment to transmit a 5G signal to a test van in Washington DC.

Verizon has announced completing another commercial 5G trial, transmitting a mobile signal to a test van in Washington DC in partnership with Nokia.

The trial utilised Verizon's millimetre-wave (mmWave) spectrum and 5G network core, along with Nokia's 5G radio equipment, taking place ahead of the carrier's launch of 5G residential broadband services by the end of 2018, which will be followed by mobile 5G solutions.

"The cadence and frequency of these significant milestone achievements from Verizon and Nokia show just how quickly we're taking the promise of 5G technology from the lab to the field and to the marketplace where our customers will ultimately use this revolutionary technology," Verizon VP of Technology Development and Planning Bill Stone said.

"We said Verizon will be first to 5G, and our latest milestone moves us closer to fulfilling that promise."

The announcement followed Verizon and Nokia last month transmitting a 5G signal between two radio sectors to a moving vehicle, calling the successful trial a "major 5G milestone".

The moving vehicle test, conducted at Nokia's Murray Hill, New Jersey campus, again utilised 28GHz mmWave spectrum and two 5G new radios, as well as a vehicle fitted with a receiver and a device to measure the connection.

"The vehicle travelled between the two radios, achieving seamless 5G NR Layer 3 3GPP-compliant mobility handoff of the signal between the two sectors (intra-gNB and inter-DU)," Verizon said in August.

Verizon last month announced that it will be bringing its 5G network to Indianapolis by the end of 2018, with the city joining Sacramento, Los Angeles, and Houston in the carrier's roadmap.

Verizon and Nokia had in February also announced making the first over-the-air call on 5G using mmWave spectrum, Nokia equipment, and a prototype device from Qualcomm; this followed the carrier announcing a successful 5G video call between Minneapolis and Seoul with Samsung and KT earlier that month.

Verizon had trialled 5G during the Indianapolis 500 motor race in partnership with Intel and Ericsson in May last year, using technologies such as beam forming and beam tracking to attain speeds in excess of 6Gbps.

Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam in May said Verizon will be making use of mmWave spectrum for its 5G networks, having trialled the technology in 2017.

The carrier's 11 pre-commercial 5G trial networks -- in Sacramento; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Atlanta, Georgia; Dallas and Houston, Texas; Miami, Florida; Seattle, Washington; Washington DC; Bernardsville, New Jersey; Brockton, Massachusetts; and Denver, Colorado -- were deployed throughout 2017.

Verizon has been additionally improving its LTE networks, in October adding Massive Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (Massive MIMO) technology across its wireless network in Irvine, California, increasing network capacity and speeds for customers in partnership with Ericsson.

Verizon and Ericsson in July further announced an expansion of their 4G LTE partnership, with the Swedish networking giant to deploy its 4G and 5G-ready radio system across multiple US markets.

The baseband and dual-band radios are software upgradeable to 5G once Verizon launches its new network, with the mobile sites also able to deliver narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) and Cat-M IoT device connectivity.

"Working with Ericsson allows us to deploy the latest technologies on our 4G LTE-Advanced network. [It] will be an important component of our rapid transition to 5G," Verizon SVP of Technology, Strategy, and Planning Ed Chan said in July.

In June last year, Verizon had told ZDNet that one of the "key" parts of 5G is interoperability, with the carrier working with Ericsson, Cisco, Samsung, Intel, LG, Nokia, and Qualcomm to roll out its pre-commercial 5G trial network.

"Interoperability ... is very key," Verizon senior solutions architect Chris Painter told ZDNet.

"It's going to be a multi-vendor solution, so we need to have that interoperability."

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