LIVE FROM GSMA MOBILE WORLD CONGRESS SHANGHAI: China is devoting substantial resources to accelerate the development of 5G, because existing technology won’t be able to keep up with the country’s soaring data demand.
Xie Feibo, director general of the Radio Regulations Bureau, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), said the reason behind this push is simple: China has the largest population in the world, which means at some point it will have the largest data flows.
“Currently technologies are not sufficient to handle the coming data flows as we move from human-to-human communications to M2M, and spectrum in the future has to support broadband and narrow-band channels. Each square metre will have at least one million connections. So how much spectrum do we need? It’s a huge amount. The government has given me the very big job to find a way to support these future data flows,” he said.
During his presentation today, in the Collaboration in Asia for Spectrum for 5G session, Xie said the government’s attitude towards 5G has been extremely supportive, with initiatives to mobilise all of the ministry’s resources to enable developments.
He called on all players in the mobile ecosystem to “please concentrate” on C-band spectrum to prepare for the early adoption of 5G. China is focused on the 3.3-3.6GHz band in the first phase. He acknowledge that this band will not be enough, so the industry also needs to adopt new principles, the most important of which is sharing.
“Please prepare to accept this concept and start looking to share network resources with other radio services, such as the satellite industry, which can create new opportunities. In the new age of spectrum usage, spectrum sharing is key,” he said.
John Giusti, chief regulatory officer at GSMA, explained that long-term spectrum planning is essential even at this early stage of 5G development, with collaboration and harmonisation essential to success.
“China, Japan and South Korea have an unprecedented opportunity to work together to harmonise spectrum, particularly as we look above 6GHz.”
Giusti also noted that as we talk about 5G we shouldn’t lose focus on current networks, since LTE and 3G will be what most people use to connect for the foreseeable future.
Source: Mobile World Live