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Optus has commenced testing of the next ‘wave’ of 5G technology, mmWave, across four locations in Sydney, which is potentially set to facilitate speeds over 20Gbps.

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The testing saw Optus make its first mmWave data call with partner Ericsson.

The telco asserts it has received approval from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to run and test mmWave (using the 26GHz band) at four locations in Sydney, including its Macquarie Park HQ.

“… with mmWave technology expected to become available for 5G in 2021 it’s important that we start testing this technology now so that we can begin to understand how we can best harness its capabilities for our consumer and enterprise customers,” states Lambo Kanagaratnam, Optus Managing Director Networks.

mmWave will seek to enable faster speeds and reduce latency for customers, especially in high dense areas.

“With the mmWave spectrum auction scheduled for early next year, today’s announcement is another critical milestone in ensuring that all Australians can benefit from the full potential of mmWave technology,” states Martin Wiktorin, Head of Ericsson Singapore, Brunei and Philippines and Global Customer Unit Singtel.

Ericsson aserts it’s excited to partner with Singtel-owned Optus in its 5G rollout.

The news comes as customer data consumption continues to accelerate, with additional high bandwidth 5G spectrum assets seeking to meet growing user demand.

“MillimetreWave 5G is the next step in unlocking mass productivity gains through a high-speed wireless communication layer,” adds Mr Kanagaratnam.

“The enterprise market in particular is expected to gain from mmWave, with sectors such as autonomous manufacturing, mining and port operations all examples of industries that will considerably benefit from mmWave 5G and its capability to offer higher speeds.”

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