Korean tech giant Samsung, keen to show its progress in mobile technology, has revealed it recently completed a successful trial of 5G technology on board a moving train. The supplier said the test was carried out in October on a Japanese high-speed train travelling at 100kmh and registered a peak mobile data download speed of 1.7Gbps.
Using a 5G router, 5G radio access unit, virtualised RAN (vRAN) and a virtualised core to make up its pre-commercial 5G solution, Samsung reported that engineers on the train were able to download 8K video services and upload 4K video.
Japanese carrier KDDI participated in the tests which took place between two stations in Saitama. The journey distance was around one mile. Samsung says it sees a lot of potential in equipping trains with 5G which could be used to help improve passenger entertainment and information services and could also serve as a backhaul for on-board WiFi.
KDDI's senior managing executing officer, Yoshiaki Uchida said of the trial “With 5G expected to bring railway services to a whole new dimension, the success of today's demonstration in everyday locations such as a train and a train station is an important milestone indicating 5G commercialisation is near."
KDDI has collaborated with Samsung on 5G solutions since 2015 and the telco plans to continue the partnership as it gears up to a 5G network by 2020. A recent report claimed that Samsung has been working with the U.S. military to develop and test a 5G network prototype.
Meanwhile, US operator Verizon says it will launch 5G networks in several North American cities by the end of next year. Swedish mobile equipment supplier, Ericsson, recently said it expects there will be over one billion 5G users worldwide by 2023. It declined to say how many of them may be connected whilst on trains.
On-board WiFi, trackside networks, the growing market for passenger WiFi services and on-board entertainment will be the main subjects of next year’s WiFi on Trains Conference hosted by BWCS (www.Traincomms2018.com ). For more information on 2018’s event please contact Ross.Parsons@BWCS.com
This year's Train Communications System Conference was sponsored by Icomera (Gold), Nomad Digital (Silver), Fluidmesh (Bronze), 21Net (Cocktails), LetsJoin (Lunch Day 1) and RADWIN (Lunch Day 2).