The first step is to decide whether 5G’s characteristics merit a new approach, and this rests on two key issues:
- 5G will use higher frequencies with lower propagation, reducing the danger of interference
- Large numbers of extra base stations means deployment costs are much higher
But does this mean that we need a complete revision of spectrum regulation, or will the existing framework suffice? This is one of the central themes of our Understanding Modern Spectrum Management training course.
We start with a technical perspective: not just how will 5G work, but will most users’ experience be significantly different to 4G? What are the engineering principles which determine this? Is there a limit on network speed?
Then we take a commercial view: can operators afford to build these networks? Will customers pay more for 5G? What are the long term trends in operator’s finances? 5G is being used for fixed broadband in the US, but will this work in other countries?
5G has a new target market: verticals like health, transport, factory automation and virtual reality, how lucrative are they likely to be? How attractive is 5G compared to other solutions?
What can governments and regulators do to help 5G? Is it so expensive that single networks are the only solution, and can competition policy continue to protect the consumer? As mmWave propagation is so limited, should sharing be the default approach, or are regional licences the solution?
And how should the licences be awarded? Can industry still afford auctions?
As well as tackling emerging issues like 5G, Understanding Modern Spectrum Management (September 17-20) provides a grounding in the necessary technical, policy, economic and legal principles. Download the brochure to find out more.
By Martin Sims