ITU refines the criteria for selection of 5G technologies

By Kevin Thomas 7 March 2016


ITU (the United Nations specialised agency for information and communication technologies), has just concluded a meeting in Beijing, China. The meeting was used to further develop IMT-2020- the global standard for 5G mobile systems.

The ITU-R group has announced that during the meeting in Beijing it refined the criteria for the selection of 5G radio interface technologies. The group will evaluate and make a recommendation on which technology or technologies it thinks are the best fit as a global standard. But before it can do that it needs a firm set of criteria, which it’s now one step closer to.

It’s the first meeting of ITU-R Working Party 5D (the part of ITU tasked with developing international mobile telecommunication systems) following the decision at WRC-15 to identify and harmonise spectrum in frequency bands below 6 GHz.

Though while frequency bands below 6 GHz are likely to be the most vital, WRC-15 also requested ITU-R to study the potential use of additional spectrum above 6 GHz for IMT. The results of that study will be considered at the next WRC (World Radiocommunication Conference), which is set to take place in 2019, just before the commercial roll out of 5G is likely to start.

ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao said: “Following additional spectrum allocations for mobile during the World Radiocommunication Conference in late 2015, ITU is continuing to work in close collaboration with governments and the global mobile industry to make rapid progress in bringing the vision of IMT-2020 to fruition.

“Future steps in 5G mobile technology are aimed at a new paradigm of connectivity among people and things in a smart, networked environment encompassing big data, applications, transport systems and urban centres.”

Mr Liu Lihua, Vice Minister, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) of the People’s Republic of China added that: “5G has already become the research and development focus of global industry.

“The development of IMT-2020 is speeding up and the ITU-R Working Party 5D is playing a key role in international standardization and global spectrum issues related to 5G.”

This meeting was a promising start for the ITU-R’s development of a 5G standard, but there’s lots of work left to do, with further progress expected during the group’s next meeting in June 2016.

About Kevin Thomas

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Kevin Thomas has worked in the world of Telecom reporting for over 17 years. He reviewed the first 3G phone way back in 2003, reviewed the first 4G phone in 2012 and now he's keen to welcome in the first 5G phone too. Kevin previously worked for over 15 years within the Telecom industry including: AT&T in Europe, BT in the UK and Phillips in the Netherlands. He holds a HND in Telecommunications.

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