In the push towards ‘5G’ mobile internet speeds, Australian telco Telstra has launched the world’s first Gigabit LTE network. With the help of this tiny but powerful gadget from Netgear, Telstra is offering their customers download speeds of up to 1,000Mbps.
One THOUSAND Megabits per second.
This feat was achieved through a partnership between Telstra, Qualcomm, Ericsson and Netgear. While Ericsson provided the 4G infrastructure necessary to achieve the speeds, Netgear, utlising Qualcomm’s X16 LTE chipset, produced this: The Nighthawk M1 router.
The Nighthawk M1 also comes with a built-in Ethernet network port as well as fast dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi so you can connect up to 20 devices to it concurrently. It’s also got a regular USB and USB Type-C connector for charging and media streaming. You can also control it with your phone via the Netgear mobile application. Even more awesome is that Netgear claims that their new portable 4G router can last up to 24 hours of continuous use.
Of course, the whole ‘Gigabit’ download speed is still a theoretical number. Yes, the modem can support those speeds and yes, given the ideal conditions (or ‘laboratory-like‘ conditions), the network can too. However, in real life, it’s very unlikely that you’ll be able to crack the 1,000Mbps download speed achieved in theoretical maximum testing.
The last time Telstra announced their, at the time, fastest-ever 4GX network (with the Netgear Aircard 810S) that was capable of 600Mbps, real-world usage was only about half to a third of that due in part to the busy 4G network.
Even in Sydney, during the company’s demonstration of their Gigabit LTE network to members of the media, the speed achieved was only 886.35Mbps download and 96.75Mbps upload speeds (theoretical UL speed is 150Mbps).
Well, I say ‘only’ but the truth is a download speed of nearly 900Mbps is still incredibly fast. One speed test would probably burn through your entire high speed data quota.
This is still a staggering achievement despite the fact that Telstra actually promised to crack the 1,000Mbps barrier by the end of 2016 instead. Although there are currently 15 different telcos from 11 countries around the world working on Gigabit LTE, Telstra is the first in the world to actually launch their network.