In another development in the introduction of 5G technology, Ericsson and Intel have announced they have completed an end-to-end, non-standalone, 5G New Radio (NR) data call on the 3.5GHz band.

This demonstration – a bi-directional call on both downlink and uplink streams – was completed at the Ericsson Lab in Kista, Sweden. According to the researchers, this milestone will bring 5G one step closer to commercial reality.

Ericsson’s commercially available equipment, including the 5G NR radio 6488, baseband and Packet Core supporting 5G EPC, was used for the first time in the trial. The demonstration also included the Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform, which allows for quick implementation of the latest air interfaces and communication protocols.

Nishant Batra, head of product area networks at Ericsson, says: “The work carried out by Ericsson engineers together with our partners is laying the groundwork for the commercial readiness of 5G. We continue to drive the establishment of an ecosystem that will ensure this technology is a commercial success.”

Asha Keddy, vice president and general manager of next generation and standards at Intel, added that the two companies have demonstrated a successful 5G NR non-standalone data call, which serves as another powerful proof point that commercial 5G is at hand.

She went on to say that her company has worked closely with the industry on the finalisation of the 3GPP 5G R15 standard and that it will now collaborate with partners in order to help operators accelerate their 5G networks.

The new development follows the completion of the first 5G NR standard, which Ericsson said “set the stage for the global mobile industry to start full-scale development of 5G NR for large-scale trials and commercial deployments as early as in 2019”.

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