Here's Telstra's Road Map To 5G

Forget 4G. 4G is so 5 years ago. Telstra's already on the way to rolling out 5G by 2020. That's ages away, but the good news is that you'll be able to get theoretical maximum speeds of up to 450Mbps down by April this year. Here's how it works.

Speaking at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week, Telstra talked about what it would be working on in the next five years to get 5G ready for consumer use. Mainly, the strategy surrounds upgrading 4G to make it a 5G-like service by the time 2020 rolls around. You may remember Telstra did something similar in the lead-up to its 4G deployment by upgrading 3G and rolling out Next G.

We'll start seeing the benefits of these upgrades by April this year, when Telstra switches on its LTE-Advanced network, complete with Category 9 capabilities in capital cities. LTE-A and Cat 9 bring with them theoretical maximum speeds of up to 450Mbps with a compatible device.

It works by meshing together three bands of spectrum using Carrier Aggregation to achieve those massive speeds. It builds on the existing 4GX and the compatible devices from Samsung, Netgear and Huawei to achieve even greater speed.

Telstra is working with Netgear to bring out a Wi-Fi hotspot around that time, with Category 9 capable device updates coming later on in the year.

Telstra will also roll out Voice Over LTE or VoLTE in April, before a full commercial roll-out later on in the year.

The telco is partnering with Ericsson for broader work around 5G services over the next five years. The pair will work together defining networking standards for 5G and figure out how it can cater to the next generation of devices. Devices like machine-to-machine connections, wearables and next-gen smartphones.

We're unsure as to what the roadmap looks like from 2016 onwards, but you can be sure there's a whole lot more speed for users going forward.



    what good are these speeds when the data allowance is so freaking low?

    Just means you can burn through your monthly quota in a few minutes theoretically

      Came to say the same thing. Has anyone ever had their 4G on their phones too slow to accomplish something?

      I can understand wanting faster internet at home if you use a 4G connection but for phones, how fast does it need to be?

      Also, beware of the speedtest app. It runs for a set amount of seconds, not a set amount of data. The faster your connection, the more it will blow through.

      The faster speeds allow for less congestion when many people are crowded into the same area.

      It also allows you to download the smaller files faster. If you are downloading a 130mb video, why would you wait 10 minutes when you could have it in 10 seconds?

      You are still moving the same 130mb (unless your doing so via torrents)

      Also this could allow for telstra to have unlimited streaming of foxtel to phones, that's the dream anyway - it seems a fair bit has to change internally wihtin telstra and foxtel before this can happen.

      Last edited 02/03/15 9:57 am

      Don't forget, it also means your phone can buffer a whole goddamn youtube video in the click of a finger no matter if you wanted to keep watching it or not. So you're guaranteed to use more data!

      In theory yes. In practice, it'll allow people to continue doing what they do now without the wait times for pages to load, large email attachments to be fetched, videos to buffer and apps to download.

      At some point data allowance restraints will need to be addressed, but in the mean time speed improvements are still welcome even if you need to be mindful that you can't suddenly start going nuts with your allowance.

    Work here is in a 4G area. Galaxy S4 has no reception, iPhone 4S has 3 bars. So I can't even make use of the available 4G anyway.

      That's because the iPhone 4S is working on the 3G network.

        What I mean is, I have one phone working on 4G and the other 3G. I'm unable to make use of the 4G on my relevant phone because of no signal for it.

        It's all well and good to roll out newer, faster tech - but if you can't even gain access to it (let alone have a reasonable data allowance) with the correct hardware, what good is it?

          So you are in an area that doesn't have 4G yet. Use 3G. The Galaxy S4 does 3G as well. If you're getting 3G on the 4S there is 3G signal. If you're not getting 3G signal on the S4 the S4 isn't working.

    Its the widely variable latency in good signal areas that I find annoying in the 4G network. Sometimes I just turn it off and use 3G.

      As everyone's moving over to 4G, it's actually getting faster. Best decision I ever made, moving to Boost Mobile (Telstra 3G).

    well here in Australia, we still run 3G...
    My connection at home gets the average of 9mbps and watching YouTube in 1080p is the same as 8 years ago when I would watch the load bar for 10minutes before I press the play.... But you guys go ahead, I'll just keep watching from the back....

    Dear Telstra,

    Rather than blistering fast 5G speeds, what I really need is more data allowance on my current 4G plan.

    As it stands I'm not game enough to participate in any online habits that would actually utilise blistering fast 4G and 5G speeds, such as HD video streaming, as I simply don't want to risk going over my restrictive data allowance of just 2.5 GB.

    It's like having a Bugatti Veyron, and only 2.5 km of road to drive it on. It's simply not enough to make full use of it.

      Data packs range from $5 for 250mb right up to $250 a month for 25Gb.

      Telstra is the largest and most reliable mobile phone provider. if you want more for your money with the best in the game, you will have to put your hand in your pocket.

      If you want more data at the same price, move to Vodafone.

        Welcome to the conversation Sol Trujillo! Third world Data Allowances with First World Prices. No valid reason for them not to up the allowance, except for greed.

          Not disagreeing with you but data seems to be the only place the money is at anymore for Telcos.

          Just about all plans have very comfortable call and message rates / inclusions but people now also use Snapchat, Facebook, iMessage, WhatsApp and Skype, Viber etc. for calls as well. Add to that streaming video, media heavy browsing etc.

          I think some of the US carriers used to have completely unlimited data plans which they started to discontinue a couple of years ago?

          In Australia it does seem to be overly restrictive - with exorbitant $/MB charges should one go over their included downloads though. Yup, greedy.

    So we are not talking about true 5G services, just another upgrade to the 3G spec that is currently sold as 4G (LTE)

      LTE does not equal 3G. Only the US does that where they sell Dual Channel High Speed Packet Access as 4G. We don't do that here.

      4G/LTE in every other country (sans USA) is a completely different thing.

      Last edited 02/03/15 2:02 pm

    Really!? This is like the boy who cried wolf. Look, look, look, 3G, 4G, 5G, promises, promises, promises. If you could get 3G working at full speed, reliably, no drop outs, no slow down because of high usage, I would be much more interested in that. 5G is meaningless.

      That's how wireless networks operate and without a mobile tower on every street corner, you will never change that.

      All wireless networks, even the NBN over wireless, slow down as more and more people use the system. Just ask the people currently using NBN Interim Satellite.

      Soooooo, you want Telstra to kick everyone else off 3G so you can get a perfect, uninterrupted service? Selfish much? Or is it ignorance of the way technology works?

    Like everything in the mobile world, the REAL reason for 5G upgrades is not speed, although that is a nice PR benefit.

    The REAL reason to move 4G -> 5G is cost saving. Electricity saving in particular.

    The upgrade from 3G to 4G was about cost saving in terms of bandwidth efficiency (ie being able to do more with the same radio bandwidth) and a little bit of electricity saving.

    By the time we are ready to move to 5G, Telstra will be ready to shutdown 3G which costs a lot in maintainence costs (much more than LTE/5G will)

    Also the other part of this announcement which Giz hasn't mentioned is that Trials of VoLTE will start in April, with a full rollout "later this year" (so before Christmas in other words)

    Last edited 02/03/15 2:13 pm

      Also more network capacity. Instead of having 1000 people sharing 100mb/s on 3G, you have 1000 people sharing 100mb/s on 3G and 300mb/s on 4G.

      Now with 5G, you will get 1000 people sharing 100mb/s on 3G, 300mb/s on 4G and 500mb/s on 5G.

    And yet I still pay Telstra $80 per month for 12 gigabytes on 3G as I can't get anything else. If they are still going to have expensive plans with speeds that will only give you minutes before it's run out by the time this rolls out, I might as well disconnect all together.

    I can't get ADSL, and living 8km from the closest exchange, I'm sure the NBN rollout will 'miss' my area, and they probably won't set up Wireless either. Americans say Comcast is bad, but at least if they're stuck in Comcast's monopoly they still get better value plans.

    still a lot of the time I get no 3G signal in central Sydney... WTF? get back to work Telstra!

    Perhaps by the time they install 5G they might get around and give us better "in house" 4G coverage. Everyone stands in street to make/receive calls...
    TBH it's all carriers, not just T.

      You make calls using 4G with Telstra? How precisely?

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