April has already seen several 5G-related announcements with new equipment, certifications, and collaborations.
With 5G New Radio (NR) getting closer every day, it seems that every day brings another test announcement. Wireless test competitors Anritsu, Keysight Technologies, and Rohde & Schwarz have each made 5G-related announcements in April.
Qualcomm Technologies and and Keysight claimed to have established the mobile industry’s first 5G NR data call using Frequency Division Duplexing (FDD) using Qualcomm’s second-generation Snapdragon X55 5G modem with integrated multi-mode support and Keysight’s 5G network emulation products.
Keysight announced that the Global Certification Forum (GCF) uses its <a href="https://www.keysight.com/en/pd-2968696/5g-protocol-conformance-toolset"target="_blank">5G RF Conformance Toolset to perform 5G NR standalone (SA) test cases. The independent body provides certification of 5G NR SA mobile devices based on 3GPP standards.
Getting into the GCF act, Rohde & Schwarz claimed on this day to be the first company to gain GCF approval for cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) protocol conformance testing. Though related to LTE at this time, such V2X testing will surely come to 5G.
Keysight announced that NTT DOCOMO of Japan has selected Keysight’s 5G Conformance Toolset to run signaling and protocol tests. Keysight’s E7515B UXM 5G Wireless Test Platform is the hardware behind the tests. According to the press release, NTT DOCOMO plans to commercialize 5G by 2020.
Rohde & Schwarz introduced two spectrum analyzers, the FSV3000 and FSVA3000. The models in this product line cover frequencies from 10 Hz–4 GHz to 10 Hz–44 GHz. That’s high enough to cover the first millimeter-wave (mmWave) frequencies slated for 5G use (24 GHz, 28 GHz, 39 GHz). The 30-GHz model will cover the lower two mmWave frequencies. The FSV3000 has analysis bandwidth of 200 MHz, while the FSVA3000 extends that to 400 MHz.
Related to the April 2 announcement, Keysight announced that its 5G Conformance Toolset was used to submit the “greatest number of validated GCF and PTCRB protocol, as well as radio frequency (RF) conformance test cases, for both 5G NR non-standalone (NSA) and SA mode” to GCF. The company did not specify what it means by “greatest number,” though it did say that tests included spurious emissions in the FR1 band.
Rohde & Schwarz and Chinese manufacturer OPPO announced testing the signaling of a 5G smartphone by simulating a 5G network. The tests used an R&S CMX500 Radio Communication Tester. The tests covered what is known as Frequency Range 1 (FR1), frequencies below 6 GHz. Initial 5G deployments will use frequencies in this range, as do current LTE installations. By making the connections, engineers were able to test protocols that time on the RF carriers. The CMX500 is capable of testing radios in the FR2 band (24 GHz and higher) as well.
Not to be outdone in the V2X arena, Keysight claimed OmniAir certification for its own V2X test products. According to the press release, Keysight’s E6953A DSRC V2X Test Solution performs full test automation of OmniAir Consortium WAVE-DSRC test cases based upon standards SAE J2945/1, IEEE 802.11p, IEEE 1609.2, IEEE 1609.3, and IEEE 1609.4.
One the same day, Rohde & Schwarz claimed to be the first provider of a “complete end-to-end 5G NR network test solution.” The system consists of the company’s TSME30DC down-converter and TSMx6 network scanner. Combined, the system can test 5G NR radios at frequencies to 30 GHz.
In what seems like an endless stream of “selection” announcements, 5G and LTE wireless module supplier Quectel will be using Keysight’s 5G RF DVT Toolset to test and validate RF and protocol performance in both the FR1 and FR2 bands.
Anritsu also got into the 5G act this month. Qualcomm Technologies will be using Anritsu’s MT8000A Radio Communication Test Station. Qualcomm will use the MT8000A and a CATR anechoic chamber to test its Snapdragon X50 5G modem. In the chamber, the MT8000 will perform RF measurements in both the FR1 and FR2 bands at frequencies to 39 GHz.
April 24 & 25
We can’t predict what 5G test announcements will come for the remainder of the month, but we can say that EE Times will cover the Brooklyn 5G Summit live from the NYU Tandon School of Engineering.