A meeting of some of the biggest names in telecommunications and electronics has produced the first major 5G standard, paving the way for large-scale deployments of cellular technology.
The specification refers to 5G NR, for ‘New Radio’ – essentially 5G networking’s equivalent to 4G ‘LTE’. It was established at a meeting organized by 3GPP, the international organization that sets cellular standards, and which featured a who’s who of major brands with a stake in the emergence of 5g: AT&T, BT, China Mobile, China Telecom, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson, Fujitsu, Huawei, Intel, KT Corporation, LG Electronics, LG Uplus, MediaTek, NEC, Nokia, NTT DOCOMO, Orange, Qualcomm, Samsung Electronics, SK Telecom, Sony Mobile Communications, Sprint, TIM, Telefonica, Telia Company, T-Mobile USA, Verizon, Vodafone, and ZTE.
Details of the standard have not yet been published, but in a statement announcing its completion, Fujitsu called it “an essential milestone to enable cost-effective and full-scale development of 5G NR, which will greatly enhance the capabilities of 3GPP systems, as well as facilitate the creation of vertical market opportunities.”
Various major firms have, in recent months, been actively exploring 5G technology in anticipation of its emergence. Toyota, NTT DOCOMO, Ericsson, and Intel, for example, recently conducted a field trial to stream 4K video to a moving car; and Samsung and KDDI worked together to test such technology on a moving train. Meanwhile, the latest Ericsson Mobility Report predicts that there will be a billion 5G subscriptions by 2023. Anticipation for 5G is building, in other words, and the new 5G NR standard that has emerged from the 3GPP TSG RAN Plenary Meeting in Lisbon is likely to add fuel to the fire.