The FCC has officially granted Apple approval to begin testing experimental 5G technology, according to DSLR Reports.
The iPhone maker now has permission to begin using something called “short-range millimeter wave spectrum” at two locations in California. The technology could be used in next-generation broadband, also known as 5G.
Apple applied for the license back in May, with few details about its plans or objectives other than a goal that the tests would range from the 28 GHz and 39 GHz bands. The company’s hope is that the results “will provide engineering data relevant to the operation of devices on wireless carriers’ future 5G networks.”
In other words, Apple is most likely testing 5G so it has an edge on making future iPhones ultra fast and efficient when 5G finally rolls out to the public.
The millimeter wave tests are slated to take place at two different locations in Silicon Valley, one in Milpitas and another close to Apple HQ in Cupertino. The testing will last for no longer than a year, according to the company’s original application.
Apple is far ahead of the trend, especially since the 5G standard isn’t set yet. In fact, most experts don’t expect common use of 5G technology until 2020. We’re starting to see signs of progress toward the new standard, like Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon X50 chip. Intel also announced it will roll out limited 5G connectivity for the 2018 Winter Olympic village next year.
We reached out to Apple for comment on the FCC approval and its plans for testing 5G tech, but haven’t heard back. We’ll update the story if we get a response.