Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

The FCC has granted Apple a license to test next-generation 5G wireless technologies, as brought to our attention by DSLReports.


In May, Apple submitted an application for an experimental license to test wireless technology on millimeter wave spectrum bands. Millimeter wave bands provide higher bandwidth and throughput up to 10Gb/s, but they are limited by line of sight issues that can cause problems in dense urban areas.

An excerpt from Apple's application with the FCC:
Apple Inc. seeks to assess cellular link performance in direct path and multipath environments between base station transmitters and receivers using this spectrum. These assessments will provide engineering data relevant to the operation of devices on wireless carriers' future 5G networks.
Apple intends to transmit from two fixed points located at Apple-controlled facilities in Cupertino, California, where it is headquartered, and nearby Milpitas, according to its FCC application. Apple said it anticipates that it will safely conduct its experiments for a period not to exceed 12 months.

Apple will use the 28 and 39 GHz bands, which were among those opened up by the FCC last year for the purpose of next-generation 5G broadband.

It's not entirely clear why Apple is planning to test millimeter wave performance, but it will join the likes of Google, Facebook, and major U.S. cellular carriers like AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile, who are testing 5G networks in preparation to deploy the next-generation technology in the coming years.

Apple could perhaps be preparing its future iPhones to take advantage of 5G technology, or the company may have some other purpose in mind. The 28GHz band in particular has been earmarked for earth-to-space transmissions, an area Apple has been exploring based on recent hires with satellite expertise.

Article Link: Apple Granted License to Test Next-Generation 5G Wireless Technology
  • Like
Reactions: Avieshek


macrumors 6502a
Jul 20, 2014
What's this? The spectacular iPhone 8 Edition / Pro already slated as obsolete before arrival?

(I know it's ignorant, but just goes to show how quickly technology develops, hopefully the i8 has Blueooth 5 at least)
  • Like
Reactions: Avieshek


Jul 10, 2008
Queue the articles claiming it'll be in the iPhone 8 despite the fact we're years away from seeing any of the cellular providers roll it out.


macrumors G5
Aug 10, 2007
I'm a rolling stone.
From Wikipedia:

Compared to lower bands, radio waves in this band have high atmospheric attenuation; they are absorbed by the gases in the atmosphere. Therefore, they have a short range and can only be used for terrestrial communication over about a kilometer. Absorption by humidity in the atmosphere is significant except in desert environments, and attenuation by rain (rain fade) is a serious problem even over short distances. However the short propagation range allows smaller frequency reuse distances than lower frequencies. The short wavelength allows modest size antennas to have a small beam width, further increasing frequency reuse potential.
  • Like
Reactions: ILikeAllOS


macrumors 68030
Jan 9, 2007
Can't imagine what I'd use this for. Perhaps when ARKit really takes off, it will be used to download very large 3D overlays in real time?

I don't need to watch 4K video on my phone or download huge files. Not seeing the current applications for 5G.
  • Like
Reactions: Mousesuck


macrumors regular
Oct 22, 2004
Welcome to the new world. Samsung will have 5g next year. Apple 3 years from now. And we're all stuck cause nobody here wants to use Android. And Tim knows it. Reminds me of when SJ talked about monopolies and the sales guys took over the company and eventually drove out the product guys.


macrumors G5
Aug 10, 2007
I'm a rolling stone.
Nice and all, but show me a carrier that actually provides the "theoretical" bandwidth 4G (or even 3G for that matter) promises. You can have all the jiggabytes/sec you want on paper, if it only means 30 MB/sec in the real world then what's the point.

I get over 110 Mbps on average so faster will be even greater ;-)

110Mb/s / 8 = 13.75 MB/s

@soupcan And then there are data caps/plans.


macrumors G3
Sep 8, 2002
The Netherlands

5G for Data: anytime, anyplace (no more Wifi-WLAN issues)
Wifi: local large data-transfers (file copying, 4K streaming)
Bluetooth: Authentication, voice, audio, etc.


macrumors G5
Jun 27, 2007
Central U.S.
Hopefully we can get some higher data caps and lower prices on higher tier data plans before our bandwidth empties our plans in mere minutes.
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.