February 21, 2018: 9:19 AM ET  by Kaya Yurieff   @kyurieff


The promise of faster mobile service is finally getting on the map later this year — and it’s headed south.

AT&T announced late Tuesday it will first roll out 5G to three locations: Dallas, Texas; Waco, Texas; and Atlanta. 

The wireless giant previously said it would introduce the service to about a dozen U.S. markets by late 2018, but it didn’t specify which cities or a specific timeline. The company said it would announce more cities in the coming months.

5G, heralded as the next generation of wireless network technology, is about 10 times faster than 4G, according to experts. That’s enough to download a 3D movie in 30 seconds. It would take six minutes on 4G.

Related: 5G is helping make Pyeongchang the most high-tech Olympics ever

But don’t get too excited. You’ll need a 5G capable mobile device to access the network, and currently, there are no compatible smartphones.

AT&T (T) said it expects devices from different phone makers to hit the market this year, and it plans to add to its lineup in early 2019.

5G will likely have the biggest impact on businesses. 5G networks will be able to power self-driving cars, virtual reality and smart cities. It could lead to new surgical procedures, safer transportation and faster communication with first responders.

Related: What is 5G?

Last year, Verizon announced it would launch 5G residential broadband services in 2018 in select markets.

While AT&T and Verizon have made some strides with 5G, experts project these networks will launch in 2020. Even if a 5G network is rolled out this year, essentially no one will be able to take advantage of it until 5G-enabled devices hit stores.

(AT&T has agreed to buy Time Warner, the parent of CNN, TNT, HBO, and other channels and websites.)

— CNN’s David Goldman contributed to this report.




AT&T names Atlanta, Dallas and Waco first of 12 US cities to get 5G wireless

Posted  by Matt Burns

AT&T wireless announced on Tuesday the first cities to get its 5G network. The carrier plans on installing 5G in 12 cities by the end of 2018, and on top of the list is Atlanta, Georgia and Dallas and Waco, Texas. The remaining cities will be announced at a later date.

Several carriers have been trialing 5G networks for some time. AT&T says this rollout will be based on the 3GPP standard and will operate on the millimeter wave, or mmWave, spectrum. 5G wireless is said to offer theoretical peak speeds of several gigabits a second at lower latency than existing 4G wireless networks. The combination of faster speeds and lower latency is thought to help speed adoption of Internet of Things devices and utilities that require a persistent internet connection.

“After significantly contributing to the first phase of 5G standards, conducting multi-city trials, and literally transforming our network for the future, we’re planning to be the first carrier to deliver standards-based mobile 5G — and do it much sooner than most people thought possible,” said Igal Elbaz, SVP of Wireless Network Architecture and Design at AT&T.

The rollout is ahead of availability of consumer 5G devices. It’s a chicken and egg problem. Both hardware makers and wireless carriers need to closely time launching 5G devices and networks so the return on investment is maximized. If one launches significantly early or late, the other will suffer. There’s a good chance major hardware makers will announced some of the first 5G devices next week at Mobile World Congress.





AT&T has had 5G trials across the country, including some in Austin and Waco. Many of them have focused on a fixed wireless application of 5G — super-fast internet that’s delivered to a designated area through the air instead of fiber that’s laid in the ground. In Austin, it tested 5G at an Intel building, a car wash, a church and residential apartments.  AT&T is also testing 5G fixed wireless at Magnolia Market at the Silos in Waco.”