1Gbps 5G is now available on Everest

(Image credit: China Mobile.)

It may not seem like the most pressing priority, with the world still coming to terms with a global pandemic, but this hasn’t stopped China Mobile continuing on its theme of getting mobile coverage into some of the world’s most remote places: this time, it’s 5G on Everest.

Yesterday China Telecom confirmed its Mount Everest in a statement on its Weibo page, where it said three 5G base stations were installed on April 13th at an altitude of 5,145 metres (at Everest’s ‘base’ and ‘intermediate’ camps).

Engineers from the 12-strong installation crew put the Huawei base stations in place.

Engineers from the 12-strong installation crew put the Huawei base stations in place. (Image credit: China Mobile)

25km of cable required

More than 150 China Mobile employees took part in the construction and maintenance of the new 5G base stations, with 12 engineers completing the installations at each camp. And China Mobile also said that it required 25km of new optical cables to be installed to provide a decent backhaul for the base stations.

“Due to the high altitude and insufficient oxygen, it is very difficult to move the equipment,” China Mobile posted on its Weibo page. “Since the optical cable can only be carried manually, which is extremely difficult.”

China Mobile joined forces with the state-run China Central Television to broadcast a 24-hour live-stream from Mount Everest, which attracted an audience of more than six million people.

According to China Mobile’s official Weibo page, the company said it had completed the opening of three 5G base stations with Huawei, and that “the remaining two 5G base stations and all points will be completed by April 25, when the 5G signal will cover the summit of Mount Everest”. 

The next phase of installation will see two more base stations completed by China Mobile at an altitude of 6,500 metres, providing 5G network coverage to the very top of the mountain.

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Dan Oliver

Dan is a British journalist with 20 years of experience in the design and tech sectors, producing content for the likes of Microsoft, Adobe, Dell and The Sunday Times. In 2012 he helped launch the world's number one design blog, Creative Bloq. Dan is now editor-in-chief at 5Gradar, where he oversees news, insight and reviews, providing an invaluable resource for anyone looking to stay up-to-date with the key issues facing 5G.