KDDI, Samsung demo 5G on moving train in Japan

Samsung 5G train demo (Samsung)
Samsung's precommercial 5G solution includes the router, radio access unit, virtualized RAN and virtualized core. (Samsung)

KDDI and Samsung Electronics continue to push the pedal to the metal, only this time it involves a moving train traveling at over 60 mph, where the duo demonstrated a successful downlink and uplink handover and a peak speed of 1.7 Gbps. The demo was done along a stretch of the track where the distance between two stations was about 1 mile.

They also showed how 8K video could be downloaded via the CPE installed onboard, and a 4K video filmed on a camera mounted on the train was able to be uploaded. They said it’s the first 5G demo on a moving train traveling at this speed. The tests were done Oct. 17-19 in the city of Saitama in Japan, near Tokyo.

Samsung contributed its 5G precommercial end-to-end solution, which consists of a 5G router, radio access unit, virtualized RAN and virtualized core.

Use cases as a result of the technology could pave the way for vastly improved backhaul for onboard Wi-Fi, superior passenger infotainment and increased security and analytics, the companies said.

"In collaboration with Samsung, KDDI has opened up the possibility for new 5G vertical business models, such as a high-speed train. With 5G expected to bring railway services to a whole new dimension, the success of today’s demonstration in everyday locations such as a train and train station is an important milestone indicating 5G commercialization is near,” said Yoshiaki Uchida, senior managing executive officer at KDDI, in a release. “To fulfill our aim to launch 5G by 2020, KDDI will continue exploring real-life scenario experiments for diverse 5G use and business cases together with Samsung.”

The train demo was conducted at 28 GHz, a Samsung representative told FierceWirelessTech.

Youngky Kim, president and head of Networks Business at Samsung Electronics, said Samsung’s continued research with KDDI will include research on diverse spectrums and technologies, as well as new business models and applications.

Earlier this year, KDDI and Samsung announced they had completed a 5G handover trial using the 28 GHz spectrum band in an outdoor environment, on Tokyo's metropolitan expressway among towering skyscrapers. That involved a device mounted on a vehicle that traveled at a speed of 60 km/h between two 5G base stations on a metropolitan expressway.

RELATED: KDDI, Samsung declare record in high-speed 5G mobility racetrack test

This fall, they put Samsung base stations on a racetrack in South Korea and had a car accelerate from 0 to 205 km per hour while they measured a variety of metrics, including handover interruption time, uplink, downlink and jitter. Those 5G tests demonstrated the viability and performance of 5G millimeter wave mobility solutions at speeds about 119 mph—the fastest record in the world, they said.

RELATED: Editor’s Corner—Verizon’s 5G demo at Indy 500 racetrack is kind of mind-blowing

Racetracks are a popular place for demos. Just before Memorial Day of this year, Verizon and Ericsson conducted a demo at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to show how a driver, guided only by a video feed, used virtual reality goggles to steer around the track while the windows of the car were blacked out. The car was going around 60 mph, and the demo used more than 180 beams tracking to keep the connection going strong to the radio in the car.

Editor's Note: Story updated Dec. 4 to reflect the demo was done using 28 GHz spectrum.