UK researchers shatter world record by hitting 5G speeds of 1Tb per second

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Credit: US Navy Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Travis K. Mendoza

UK researchers smashed the previous 5G record and holy smokes the new one is fast! Imagine being able to download 1Tb per second on your smartphone or tablet!

Imagine being able to wirelessly download 1Tb per second on your smartphone or tablet! Researchers from the 5G Innovation Center (5GIC) at the University of Surrey have set a new world’s record for 5G speeds of 1 terabit per second! This smashed the previous 5G speed record of 7.5GB/s that Samsung achieved.

At the V3 Enterprise Mobility Summit, Professor Rahim Tafazolli said, “We have developed 10 more breakthrough technologies and one of them means we can exceed 1Tb/s wirelessly. This is the same capacity as fiber optics but we are doing it wirelessly.”

Granted, the 5G speeds of 1Tb/s were reached in lab conditions over a distance of 328 feet (100 meters) during tests that used transmitters and receivers built at Surrey. Yet Tafazolli said, “We want to be the first in the world to show such high speeds.”

5G mobile communications are expected to use the very high frequency spectrum, which is above 6 GHz. It’s been predicted that it could “support a wide variety of uses, ranging from financial trading and entertainment to gaming and holographic projections,” to the Internet of Things, to smart cars using it for communications to talk to “street lights and other smart city services.”

Latency and reliability were called the “key drivers” of those blazing 5G speeds as 5G is a standard expected to be used for at least 20 years. According to Tafazolli, “An important aspect of 5G is how it will support applications in the future. We don’t know what applications will be in use by 2020, or 2030 or 2040 for that matter, but we know they will be highly sensitive to latency. We need to bring end-to-end latency down to below one millisecond so that it can enable new technologies and applications that would just not be possible with 4G.”

Of course, if we could use those 5G speeds to download 1Tb of goodies per second, it seems like most mobile devices would blow up. We seriously would need more storage on smartphones. Previously you could find 64GB SD cards, but then last August SanDisk came out with the “world’s highest capacity SD card;” with a write speed of 90 MB/s and transfer speeds of up to 95 MB/s, the $599.95 512GB SanDisk Extreme Pro SDXC memory card was for shooting 4K ultra high definition video.  On March 3 SanDisk plans to announce “something big,” but it remains to be seen if that will mean even more storage capacity on an SD card.

When is 5G coming to the U.S.?

In October 2014, a Congressional Research Service report (pdf) about deploying Fifth Generation wireless technology in the U.S. stated, “Because the United States is the leader in 4G LTE deployment, many believe that it will be able to maintain that leadership by moving quickly to 5G by 2025.” The same month, the FCC issued a Notice of Inquiry (pdf) to look into “the use of millimeter wave technologies in expanding wireless coverage and capacity.”

The CRS report added that the European Union’s METIS “would lay the foundation for 5G by 2020” and the EU was collaborating with Japan and South Korea to develop and deploy 5G; China is also shooting for 5G by 2020. The UK may be first, as V3 reported that 5GIC plans to “take the technology outside the lab and onto campus at the university during 2016 or 2017 before demonstrating it to the public in early 2018.”

Ofcom, the UK communications regulator, previously said 5GIC would help “ensure that the UK is a global leader in developing a roadmap towards 5G.”

Samsung is also working with University of Surrey as one of 5GIC’s partners. Next week at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Samsung and Korean mobile carrier SK Telecom are expected to show off a new 7.5Gbps 5G wireless speed.

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