Play and Plus also announce 5G networks
5G has been a buzzword in all publications concerning mobile, smart home or broadly defined IoT for several years now. In a reality where 4G (LTE) is starting to be a problem right outside of major cities, 5G appears to be the Holy Grall of mobile operators. Phone manufacturers have also eagerly entered this race by releasing 5G Ready phones that are unlikely to live to see true 5G deployment.
5G actually promises a lot. Download up to 20 Gbps, upload up to 10 Gbps and latency as low as 1 ms. In addition to such mundane changes as improved audio/video streaming or the ability to remotely play expanded games, 5G will allow for the rapid development of industry, medicine or Internet of Things technology e.g. autonomous cars.
5G is also strongly associated with abuse in the mobile industry. In addition to the 5G Ready phones mentioned above, there are known cases of fake 5G offered by mobile networks. American AT&T was heavily criticized for communicating and displaying the 5G E (5G Evolution) stamp on its phones, which de facto was even slower 4G than the competition. Also in Poland, Play for a long time communicated its network as "5G Ready" which meant, and I quote, "5G READY is an advanced LTE network ready for 5G technology that will appear in the future".
Well, the future has arrived. In January Play launched the first, real, test 5G network in the Tri-City area, and this week announced its expansion to another 16 cities. A total of 500 base stations will be built, covering 5 major metropolitan areas and 11 smaller towns.
I am proud to announce the progress of Play in the implementation of 5G network. 500 base stations in 16 Polish cities at the beginning of the year is a confirmation of dynamic expansion of the network. Thanks to intensive development of 5G infrastructure and experience gathered in Tricity, Toruń, Sokołów Podlaski and Grójec we are ready for 5G commercialization. Our goal is to bring the latest technology and its benefits to Polish consumers at the same time as the most technologically advanced countries in the world – said Jean Marc Harion, President of Play.
Also other Polish operators are not asleep in the pearls of ashes. A few days ago also Plus, in cooperation with Ericsson, announced work on the implementation of 5G network in five Polish cities – Gdansk, Lodz, Poznan, Szczecin and Wroclaw. The fifth generation system will operate at 2600 MHz in TDD (Time Division Duplex) technology. The project will include nearly 80 base stations based on non-standalone architecture. In the fall, Orange Poland also teamed up with Ericsson to launch a test 5G network in Warsaw.
We have been pioneers in implementing the LTE technology, which as one of the first operators in the world has been made available in the 1800 MHz band. Providing access to high-speed mobile Internet has revolutionized the telecommunications market in Poland and enabled the development of many branches of the Polish economy. I am very happy that at the time when the world stands on the threshold of a new revolution, which is 5G, Plus is again its leader. Thanks to us, soon 5G will cease to be a media fact, but will become a reality. The first devices operating in our 5G network are already available and we will soon present them – said Jacek Felczykowski, Member of the Management Board of Cyfrowy Polsat S.A. and Polkomtel Sp. z o.o., Plus network operator.
The introduction of network availability in our country is only half of the success. Operators must now make available the devices that will be able to exploit the potential of 5G. An additional challenge will be to cover as large an area of our country with the fast network as possible.