Rogers Communications says Nanaimo is the first city in Canada to receive the company’s high-speed, high-capacity 3500 MHz 5G service. (Darren Calabrese/Canadian Press)

Rogers Communications says Nanaimo is the first city in Canada to receive the company’s high-speed, high-capacity 3500 MHz 5G service. (Darren Calabrese/Canadian Press)

Nanaimo first Canadian city to connect to Rogers Communications’ new high-capacity network

Company says 3500 MHz 5G will benefit commercial, industrial, public-sector and home clients

Nanaimo is the first city in Canada to receive Rogers Communications’ new 3500 MHz 5G cellular system as the company begins deploying its new high-speed service.

Rogers announced, in a press release, the high-speed service went live Wednesday, June 15, and the company will continue switching on the service across Canada, including Vancouver and other urban centres as well as multiple rural areas.

The 3500 MHz band increases 5G network data capacity and will boost speed to enable Rogers to offer new service possibilities, such as augmented reality and machine learning, smart homes, vehicles and cities for consumers and business customers, the company said.

“Today’s deployment builds on our foundational 5G investment in low-band 600 MHz spectrum, so we can usher in a new era of mobile and fixed wireless broadband that will create jobs, fuel innovation and keep our economy competitive,” said Tony Staffieri, Rogers Communications president and CEO, in the release.

Rogers said it has already demonstrated one of the system’s capabilities at an NHL hockey game where fans in the arena watched the game in the arena while wearing augmented reality glasses. Other benefits noted in the press release include remote diagnostic capabilities for the health-care sector to provide real-time images and X-rays to health-care providers working in ambulances, for example, or the ability for port authorities to remotely control autonomous haulage vehicles to improve safety.

The company says its 3500 MHz spectrum will provide increased capacity and more reliable services for customers with wireless home internet, and will benefit operations for commercial enterprises, universities, and public-sector customers operating private wireless networks.

“The speed and capacity of 5G, coupled with our rapidly expanding network footprints, offers endless possibilities for consumers and business users, from smart homes, vehicles and cities, to augmented reality and machine learning and we’re eager to deliver these benefits to Canadians no matter where they may live,” said Jorge Fernandes, Rogers Communications chief technology officer, in the press release.

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