Telstra starts 5G trial but no iPhone support until 2020

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Telstra has launched 5G network in Canberra, Adelaide and Perth but rumours suggest Apple won’t release an iPhone with support until 2020.

The first Telstra base stations went live in Flinders Street, Adelaide; Pialligo in Canberra and Narrows Bridge in Perth. Telstra plans to have 200 base stations live by the end of 2018.

There are currently no commercial customers on the network and it’s not expected to be available until late next year. Optus is expected to start it’s rollout in the first half of 2019 and Vodafone says it is waiting for phone support.

5G promotes theoretical data speeds up to 20 gigabits per second vastly exceeding the beleaguered NBN network.

The initial release will likely be limited to 20-30% faster than 4G until more base stations are rolled out. To achieve full speeds you need to be closer to the base station than with 4G so more stations are needed.

Fast Company sources report Apple plans to exclusively use Intel’s 8161 5G modem chip in its 2020 phones. 

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Apple iPhone XS & XR released in 2018.

They report Apple has been unhappy with Intel lately due to issues with their 8060 chip which has heat and battery life issues.

Apple is reportedly also exploring MediaTek supplying the 5G chips but this is reportedly a Plan B if the issues continue with Intel’s latest chip.

To date none of Apples major competitors like Samsung or Google have announced plans to release 5G phones to Australia.