Following AT&T’s pledge last month to build out a true 5G network by the end of the year, the telecom has announced its first three of 12 locations that will get standards-based, mobile 5G by the end of the year. The company says two Texas cities, Dallas and Waco, are on the list, as well as Atlanta, Georgia. An AT&T spokesperson says additional cities will be “announced in the coming months, rounding out the dozen we have committed to hit this year.”
AT&T originally announced its intentions to build a 5G network last year. But that technology was essentially a rebranding and deployment of existing LTE capabilities that AT&T cleverly called “5G Evolution,” which it seems was intended to confuse consumers into thinking its network had jumped ahead of competitors. However, 3GPP — the standards organization in charge of classifying what is and isn’t 5G — signed off on official specifications for a true 5G network in December of last year. Shortly after, AT&T announced its intentions to build a true network that matches the new standards.
“Our mobile 5G deployments this year will be based on 3GPP standards. We will use mmWave to provide mobile 5G first, and then deploy the technology on additional spectrum bands,” an AT&T spokesperson said in a statement. “Also, note that the equipment that we are deploying today in our LTE network is 5G capable. So the work that we are doing now prepares us to seamlessly migrate to standards-based 5G.”