What’s behind the technology?
The 5G mobile standard is still being developed, but in comparison to current 4G+ (LTE-Advanced) networks, it will have up to 1000 times the capacity, at least 100 times the connection density, a latency time that is ten times shorter, a maximum data transfer rate of up to 10 Gbit/s with a guaranteed minimum of 1 Gbit/s, and up to 10 times better energy efficiency. In order to take advantage of this potential, a new technological basis for a large number of new applications will be provided via almost 100% network coverage and reliability.
5G is part of the Single Market Strategy
In Europe, 5G is seen as one of the key technologies in the coming decade, not only within Europe but also across global markets. Part of the Digital Single Market Strategy is the ‘5G for Europe’ action plan adopted by the European Commission on 14 September 2016. The aim is to make 5G available by the end of the current decade.
The ‘5G for Europe’ action plan can be viewed here.
EU flagship initiative
In July 2017, the 28 telecommunication ministers of the EU Member States, as well as Norway, signed the ‘5G Declaration’ in Tallinn as a flagship initiative. It outlines the steps that the Member States and Norway must take to ensure the rapid introduction of 5G and related services across all of Europe. It also specifies the need to have the right conditions to take advantage of the full potential of 5G e.g. the availability of radio spectrum and cross-border frequency coordination.
The 5G Declaration can be viewed here.
The telecommunication ministers from 25 Member States met in Tallinn on 3 November to discuss a detailed timetable and steps for developing the 5G network (by 2025) in the EU.
The current Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research has set aside €258 million for the development of technologies. This means that the European telecommunications industry will be the first to benefit from this funding. Later, the focus will be on application research.
And finally: the finance ministries of the EU Member States are already looking forward to the potential revenues associated with allocating 5G mobile frequencies. For example, in Germany in 2000, mobile phone providers paid the federal state a total of €50.8 billion for 3G licences for the period between 2001 and 2020.