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With six antennas in downtown Berlin, Deutsche Telekom has laid the foundation for rolling out the LTE successor in Germany. These are the first 5G antennas in Europe working under real conditions on the live network based completely on the future communication standard 5G New Radio (NR). In the coming months the company is looking to set up a large 5G test field with 70 antennas at over 20 locations. According to Roland Berger analysts, it’s about time: Recently, the consultation firm teamed up with the Internet Economy Foundation (IE.F) to put out a study issuing a firm warning against Germany getting left behind in migrating to 5G. Friedbert Pflüger, president of the IE.F, put the core argument into words: “German industry already relies on many future technologies that will finally get a real jump-start with the new wireless standard.”

In the Berlin cluster, the 5G technology is already being integrated into the existing network infrastructure, meaning it interacts with Telekom 4G technology. Currently, the antennas use the 3.7 GHz spectrum, as the 3 GHz band is considered one of the start bands for 5G. The license and frequency allocation of the Federal Network Agency will provide the basis for the 5G spectrum and further planning. Huawei will provide the hardware; the technology, software and terminals are based on the standards of international cooperation 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project) for 5G New Radio in the non-standalone variant.