AT&T Testing 'DirecTV Now' Rollout in 5G4 Jan, 2017 By: Erik Gruenwedel
AT&T Jan. 4 said it moving ahead implementing new faster 5G technology for the transmission of video and audio content on fixed and wireless distribution channels.
In a presentation at CES in Las Vegas, the telecom said it wouldn’t wait for 5G industry standards and spectrum requirement, and is moving ahead with rollout of 1 Gbps broadband speed in select markets.
In the first half of the year, AT&T is conducting a trial in Austin, Texas, enabling residential customers to stream online TV service DirecTV Now over a fixed wireless 5G connection. As part of this trial, the telecom is also testing undisclosed next-generation entertainment services over fixed 5G connections.
The trial will include multiple sites and devices, and is expected to further advance AT&T’s understanding of 5G – notably how fixed wireless mmWave technology handles heavy video traffic, according to John Donovan, chief strategy officer and group president, technology and operations.
Additional 5G testing later this year will include partnerships with mobile deivce manufacturers Qualcomm and Ericsson.
“Data on our mobile network has increased about 250,000% since 2007, and the majority of that traffic is video. 5G’s promise of greater speed and overall network performance brings huge opportunities not only for video but in the ‘Internet of Things,’ 4K video, augmented and virtual reality, smart home and cities, autonomous vehicles and much more,” Donovan said.