What you need to know
- T-Mobile hit 3 Gbps speeds with its standalone 5G network using three bands together thanks to 5G carrier aggregation (NR CA).
- T-Mobile’s NR CA used two 2.5GHz bands and a 1.9GHz band together to achieve this result.
- The test was completed on a Samsung Galaxy S22 and the upgraded connection is expected to be available to customers later this year.
T-Mobile has accumulated a massive amount of mid-band spectrum and has made sure that not a single bit of it has gone to waste by building the largest 5G network in the county. Continuing this trend, T-Mobile announced that it has topped 3 Gbps download speeds using 5G carrier aggregation (NR CA) to combine three 5G bands. This test used production hardware and a commercial device to achieve these speeds.
With two bands using its 2.5GHz spectrum (band n41) and the third using 1.9GHz spectrum (band n25), T-Mobile is achieving speeds previously only seen on mmWave 5G without the coverage sacrifices of mmWave. Interestingly, this is the spectrum T-Mobile acquired through its purchase of Sprint.
T-Mobile has combined two n41 channels with 100MHz and 90MHz of spectrum plus an n25 channel with 20MHz of spectrum. Altogether, T-Mobile is using 210MHz of spectrum to achieve these speeds.
T-Mobile points out that this result is only possible on a standalone 5G network (SA 5G) which the carrier was the first to launch two years ago. T-Mobile has already been using two-band NR CA in parts of the country with n41 spectrum to increase speeds but has yet to deploy the third n25 band. Alone, these bands can deliver decent transmission speeds but using all three takes things to another level.