French carrier Orange announced plans to extend 5G tests to greater Paris area and Île-de-France. The telco said that Paris, Châtillon and Linas-Montlhéry are the next zones to host Orange’s new 5G tests.
In Paris, Orange said it will introduce a platform designed for 5G demonstrations in the Opéra district where its Orange Opéra megastore is located. This 5G test will take place next year, the telco said.
Also, starting this autumn, Orange will offer its partners the chance to test innovative products and services in a 5G laboratory at its Orange Gardens site in Châtillon. The telco said that this facility will offer a very low-latency connection with speeds faster than those available via 4G. These tests will focus in particular on 5G services for the general public, such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), communications in an immersive environment and 4K/8K video. 5G services for companies will continue to be addressed in co-innovation projects at the dedicated Paris-Saclay platform, Orange said.
“The allocation of frequencies to Orange to conduct 5G tests in Linas-Montlhéry will help reach a new milestone by combining the latest telecoms innovations for vehicles, with a site adapted to testing the most advanced vehicles, including autonomous and connected vehicles,” the carrier said in a statement.
“Working in collaboration with telecoms and automobile industry players and the related authorities, it will also be possible to assess these technologies and further develop the latest models to foster the emergence of a new ecosystem based on intelligent transport systems (ITS).”
The telco has been testing 5G technologies in the cities of Lille and Douai. Earlier this month, Orange said it had received authorization from telecom regulator Arcep to use spectrum in the 3.7–3.8 GHz frequency band in Marseille.
Orange will carry out these new technical tests in Marseille using 5G equipment from its partner Nokia.
Last week, the French government said it expects at least one major city to have commercial 5G services by 2020 as one of the key initiatives of the country’s 5G roadmap.
This follows through on the agreement reached between the government, telecom regulator Arcep and mobile operators on January 14, aimed at rapidly achieving a high standard of coverage across the whole of France, by stepping up the pace of 4G rollouts.
“5G is strategically vital to France’s industry, the competitiveness of our economy, innovation and revitalised public services. Starting in 2020, 5G is promising to deliver a jump in technological performances and pave the way for a variety of new uses for both consumers (ubiquitous 3G video streaming, etc.) and businesses (development of disruptive applications in every sector),” Arcep said in a statement.
The roadmap sets a number of targets, including the launch of several 5G pilot projects in a variety of regions; the allocation of new 5G frequencies and the provision of 5G coverage of the main transport routes by 2025. – RCR Wireless News