According to Verizon, the specification lays out guidelines to test and validate 5G technical components, allowing industry players including chipset vendors, network vendors and wireless operators to develop interoperable solutions. The specification will also facilitate participation in pre-standard testing and fabrication, Verizon said.
“The completion of the 5G radio specification is a key milestone toward the development of a complete 5G specification,” Verizon Vice President Network Technology Planning Adam Koeppe said. “The level of collaboration that we are seeing exceeds what we saw during 4G. This agile way of developing the specification and working with the ecosystem will enable us to get to market rapidly.”
Verizon CFO Fran Shammo said in April the carrier is on track to deploy a fixed wireless 5G pilot in 2017.
The specification calls for a Verizon’s 5G Radio Access physical layer to be based on Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) with a cyclic prefix (CP) in the downlink and uplink. Half duplex operation will be supported via Time Division Duplex (TDD).
Verizon’s plan will support a single component carrier bandwidth of 100 MHz, according to the specification.
Verizon said the specification came courtesy of a collaboration with its 5G Technology Forum partners, which include telecommunications companies and handset vendors Apple, Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco, Ericsson, Intel, Nokia, Qualcomm and Samsung.
Earlier this year, Verizon began 5G trials with several of these partners, including Ericsson, Samsung, Intel and Nokia.
So far, tests conducted in New Jersey, Massachusetts and Texas have yielded more than 10 gbps peak throughput using Ericsson’s 5G Radio Prototypes, and confirmed the ability to deliver 5G wireless speeds over millimeter wave band spectrum using Samsung’s 5G Hybrid Adaptive Array antenna radio. In April, Verizon was also planning to test equipment from Ericsson, Intel, Qualcomm and Samsung on 28 GHz spectrum in both Texas and New Jersey.
In addition to working with its 5G Technology Forum partners, Verizon said it is also collaborating with South Korean telecom company KT Corporation on a “harmonized” 5G specification.
Though T-Mobile CFO Braxton Carter previously hinted Verizon’s push toward 5G comes from necessity rather than a desire to innovate, analyst Roger Entner has said leadership in 5G could give Verizon an edge similar to the one it had with the roll out of 4G LTE.
The release of Verizon’s specifications comes well ahead of the anticipated release of 3GPP’s 5G standards in 2018.
In March, Entner warned a pre-standard deployment of 5G technology would result in Verizon having to either adjust its pre-standard network installations or have vendors build specifically to their standards as they did with CDMA in the 4G roll out.
At the time, Entner said there was no talk of a technology split but noted the chance of one occurring as “small but possible” thanks to the FCC’s allowance of multiple technologies in the marketplace.