GSA Spectrum Group objectives, the important role of international spectrum allocations for fifth generation (5G) mobile systems
One of the key objectives of the GSA Spectrum Group is to aggregate information from a diverse range of radio frequency spectrum uses and to share it to increase the industry awareness for the convenience of the policy makers and regulators, as well as for the colleagues in all interested industries, such as for power line, transport, manufacturing, automotive, travel industries, etcetera. The Spectrum Group is addressing both shorter-term and longer-term developments of radiocommunication technologies, services and applications while designing strategic roadmaps for harmonized mobile broadband spectrum arrangements – under national, regional and global perspectives.
At an international level, harmonized uses of radio frequency bands follow the geographic allocations to specific radiocommunication service(s) by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). National radio frequency spectrum arrangements and uses are managed under sovereign practices, as a national asset, by national policy makers and regulators. However, national spectrum management, in an international context, typically takes into account the principal frequency allocations of the Radio-regulations. When national spectrum resources are appropriately harmonized, arranged and licensed, they undoubtedly will return substantial social and economic values to consumers, travelers, businesses and Governments – indeed to the society as a whole – this aspect will be of special importance over the coming years when 5G networks will be rolled out in countries. The 5G networks will without a doubt support all aspects of societies, including the provision of services and applications in remote areas. 5G services are indeed expected to bridge the digital divide within and between countries.
There are now about 5 billion mobile users in the world. The total number of mobile subscriptions in early 2016 was around 7.4 billion, divided between 3.7 billion mobile broadband subscriptions and 3.4 billion smartphone subscriptions. By 2021 the number of subscriptions are estimated to be in the order of 9 billion, out of this about 150 million are estimated to be 5G subscriptions. The internet of things (IoT) is estimated to have a significant impact on future infrastructures. It is expected that there will be around 28 billion connected devices including smartphones and tablets used on all mobile networks; a vast range of personal computers and other consumer electronic devices like television sets and video recorders. Of these more than 15 billion will be IoT devices. *
The 28 billion connected devices represent a huge number, but this is not the end of the story; this number will rapidly and continuously grow beyond 2021. This massive introduction of 5G devices means that regulators and policy makers already are now invited to consider how best to secure spectrum and regulatory conditions in support of a growing 5G ecosystem.
All things considered, the GSA Spectrum Group is indeed committed in providing information to support national policy makers and regulators’ decisions in their important effort to promote early and continuing 5G deployments through the identification of specific radio frequency bands and ranges to meet the requirements for enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) and IoT use cases in their individual countries.
* Ericsson Mobility Report, June 2016
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