ITU Announces 5G Specs
5G R&D has been a major focus for telecoms companies and players in IoT because of its’ ubiquitous connectivity and low-latency. It allows millions of devices to be connected to the same network, provides greater download and streaming speeds, and is the key piece of infrastructure for the Internet of Things. Great progress was made last week when the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) announced wireless mobile technology specs for 5G at the 2017 Mobile World Congress. ITU decided that 5G infrastructure must have a download capacity of 20Gbps for a single 5G cell. Additionally, infrastructure must be able to support up to 1 million connected devices per square km and will require carriers to have at least 100 MHz of free spectrum. While the connection density requirements sound high, it is not just handling mobile phone connection anymore, but also cars, drones, and any other devices that have a wireless connection.
After this announcement, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) held two votes where they decided that the 28GHz, 37GHz, 39GHz, and 64-71GHz spectrum would be dedicated to 5G. Some reports are now saying that 5G could become a reality in 2018. China has been researching spectrum but has not yet announced which wavelengths they will use. In order to deploy 5G in China, the current network architecture needs to be expanded or new 5G infrastructure needs to be built. Chinese equipment makers are in favor of building new infrastructure so they can use their own technology and avoid paying patent royalties. The Chinese Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT) is currently continuing spectrum and standards research for 5G, but no further announcements have been made at this point.