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Home5G newsAST SpaceMobile achieved the first 5G connection between smartphone and a satellite

AST SpaceMobile achieved the first 5G connection between smartphone and a satellite

AST SpaceMobile has achieved a groundbreaking milestone, marking the first ever 5G connection for both voice and data transmission between a standard smartphone and a satellite positioned in space. During a notable demonstration, the company’s engineers established a space-based 5G connection by initiating a call from Maui, Hawaii, to a Vodafone engineer located in Madrid, Spain. This remarkable feat was accomplished utilizing AT&T spectrum and AST SpaceMobile’s cutting-edge BlueWalker 3 test satellite. Notably, the BlueWalker 3 satellite stands as the most extensive commercial communications array ever deployed in Low Earth Orbit (LEO).

The 5G call was placed on 8 September using an unmodified Samsung Galaxy S22 smartphone located near Hana, Hawaii, in a wireless dead zone. 5G connectivity testing was carried out in association with Vodafone, AT&T and Nokia. In a separate test, the company broke its previous space-based cellular broadband data session record by achieving a download rate of approximately 14Mbps.

Texas-based AST SpaceMobile notes that it currently has agreements and understandings with more than 40 mobile network operators globally, which serve approximately 2.4 billion subscriptions between them, including Vodafone Group, Rakuten Mobile, AT&T, Bell Canada, Orange, TelefonicaTIMMTN, Saudi Telecom Company, Zain KSA, Etisalat, Indosat Ooredoo Hutchison, Telkomsel, Smart Communications, Globe Telecom, Millicom, Smartfren, Telecom Argentina, Telstra, Africell, Liberty Latin America (LLA) and others.

Vodafone, Rakuten, American Tower, Samsung NEXT and Bell Canada are all listed as strategic investors in AST SpaceMobile.

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