Australian operator Telstra has switched on pre-commercial 5G cell sites at the Gold Coast in Queensland to support its ongoing testing of 5G mobile technologies in Australian conditions.
The new sites will enable Telstra to test 5G pre-commercial devices in Australian conditions, supporting its 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast.
Initiatives from the center include deployment of the first precinct of 5G-enabled hotspots, testing of a 5G connected car and the world's first end-to-end 5G non-standalone data call on a commercial mobile network.
Telstra CEO Andrew Penn said the company plans to deploy more than 200 5G-capable cell sites across the country by the end of the year.
“Over the coming months we will continue expanding our 5G coverage with plans to roll out to more capital cities, regional centers and other high demand areas,” he said.
The operator's 5G rollout forms part of its commitment to invest $5 billion in its mobile networks over the three years ending in June 2019, and is a key component of the operator's recently announced T22 digital transformation strategy.
“Our T22 strategy will be underpinned by our aim to have the largest, fastest, safest, smartest and most reliable next generation network, and these ongoing investments will ensure we continue to deliver market leading innovation in networks,” Penn said.