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AT&T Kicks Off 5G-Powered DirecTV Now Trial

AT&T has moved ahead with a second trial in Austin, Texas, that uses millimeter wave spectrum and emerging 5G technologies to deliver services from DirecTV Now, the company’s new OTT TV service.

The second test, targeted to residential and business customers, is using Ericsson's 5G RAN and Intel’s 5G Mobile Trial Platform, and delivering live TV from DirecTV Now on a fixed wireless 5G signal. The latest trial in Austin, follows a fixed wireless 5G business customer trial conducted there in 2016.

AT&T said it expects the trial in Austin will deliver speeds up to 1 Gbps using mmWave spectrum. Earlier this year, AT&T and Nokia combined on test of 5G fixed-wireless streaming of DirecTV Now over a 39 GHz system that was conducted at the AT&T Labs facility in Middletown, N.J.

The Austin trials, AT&T said, represent a “major step on our journey to deliver state-of-the-art 5G wireless speeds as early as late 2018.”

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