Ericsson's 5G phone is too big to fit in a car

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) has made some tweaks to its 5G phone since last summer, but it's still too big to fit into a car.

The phone is extra large because it's full of new, experimental components that haven't been miniaturized yet. Plus, it requires a large battery, Erik Dahlman, a senior expert in radio access technologies at Ericsson, told PC World. Miniaturization will come later.

To conduct trials near Stockholm, Ericsson uses vans or specially made carts to move the device around. "We are running around with a big bus with a very big mobile phone on it," Dahlman said. According to PC World, the 5G base stations in the test are normal-sized.

Ericsson was using the device last year as well, when Fortune reported it was already clocking speeds of 2 Gbps in outdoor tests. 

In the United States, Ericsson is among the vendors and operators calling on the FCC to make higher frequency spectrum available for 5G. The U.S. has been a global leader in 4G deployment and is well-positioned to continue to lead in 5G as well, the company said in a filing with the FCC last week. The millimeter wave spectrum holds "tremendous promise for 5G services, despite its significant challenges."

Ericsson also makes a case for combining the 37 and 39 GHz bands into a single 3-GHz-wide band and not segregating them into two bands with different rules and eligibility restrictions. "An unencumbered band of spectrum with uniformity of service and technical rules will facilitate the assignment of large contiguous blocks that are so important for 5G," Ericsson states.

While it's all for making the higher bands available, Ericsson also urged the commission to promptly issue a further notice addressing bands below 30 GHz.

In considering new bands for 5G, global harmonization of both the bands and the licensing structure will give the U.S. ecosystem the benefit of economics of scale. Ericsson wants the U.S. to select bands that can be matched with bands in other parts of the world. One example comes out of WRC-15, namely the need for study of bands below 30 GHz for 5G, and specifically bands that are considered international ranges like 24-29.5 GHz.

For more:
- see this PC World article
- see this FCC filing

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