Friday, 17 August 2018 05:44

Optus pours cold water on Telstra's '5G first' claims Featured

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Optus pours cold water on Telstra's '5G first' claims Pixabay

Singtel Optus, the second biggest telco in Australia by market share, has poured cold water on Telstra's claim that it is the first Australian network provider to be 5G ready, saying the lack of commercially available 5G devices means no provider can claim leadership in this race right now.

Telstra said on Wednesday that it had switched on what it said were Australia's first 5G services, covering parts of the Gold Coast.

But Optus Networks managing director Dennis Wong contested this claim on Thursday. In a statement, he said the company had already publicly demonstrated its 5G capability in April at its 5G Live showcase during the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

This demonstration "combined state-of-the-art 5G use cases and 8K video streaming on-the-go on Optus’s live 5G trial indoor and outdoor network, in addition to achieving speeds of 16Gbps", Wong added.

The hype over 5G has been building for a while, with both network providers and device manufacturers making claims to be first in the race.

For example, Motorola claimed earlier this month that it had released the first 5G smartphone — the Moto Z3 — which is actually a 4G phone, with the 5G capabilities to come via an accessory that the company plans to release sometime early next year, which will snap onto the phone's back.

"With our substantial spectrum holdings compared to our competitor and our advanced planning, Optus is confident in its ability to deliver commercial 5G services in January 2019. We will update the market on our plans in early September," Wong said.

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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