5G Americas announced the publication of 5G Spectrum Recommendations, a white paper outlining recent global developments in the identification and allocation of spectrum that will address the varied opportunities for a robust 5G technology ecosystem.

“In the past, present and future, spectrum has always been and will be the lifeblood of our mobile wireless ecosystem,” commented Chris Pearson, President, 5G Americas. “As we head toward 5G deployments, it is expected that low, mid and high band spectrum--including licensed spectrum, bands shared with other services and unlicensed spectrum, will play a critical role in the healthy future of the mobile wireless industry.”

5G services are expected to cover a wide range of applications, which are grouped into three general categories: enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), Ultra-Reliable and Low Latency Communications (URLLC) and massive Machine-Type Communications (mMTC). Applications will not only set different requirements on network features but will also drive a wide variety of deployment scenarios in a variety of spectrum bands. The different physical characteristics of particular spectrum bands, such as the amount of potentially available spectrum, coverage/range, penetration into structures and propagation around obstacles, will support different or varied applications depending upon their requirements.

Spectrum harmonization is important to enabling mobile broadband by facilitating economies of scale and global roaming. Harmonization is not limited to a situation where all regions have identical spectrum allocations. It can also be derived from “tuning range” solutions covering adjacent or nearly-adjacent bands in which equipment can be reconfigured to operate over multiple bands (i.e., they are within the same tuning range).

The 5G Americas white paper confirms that tuning ranges are critical to delivering the benefits of harmonization because the radio units in user devices developed for one band can also be utilized in some nearby bands without requiring entirely new development efforts, thereby driving economies of scale and benefitting end-users.

5G Spectrum Recommendations presents specific calls to action and recommends practical means for achieving global harmonization on 5G spectrum, creating economies of scale and helping to create a healthy 5G ecosystem. Countries and regions around the world are working independently and cooperatively to develop harmonized spectrum bands through the efforts at the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). In 2016, in addition to the incentive auctions of the 600 MHz low-range spectrum, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took a leadership role in 5G by adopting spectrum allocation rules in the Spectrum Frontiers proceedings for the high-range spectrum in the 28, 37 and 39 GHz ranges. These spectrum ranges are also being considered in other regions of the world.

5G Spectrum Recommendations white paper provides an overview of the following:

  • Dependencies between 5G applications’ spectrum requirements and spectrum ranges.
  • Recent regional and global 5G spectrum developments.
  • Spectrum needs of 5G applications and factors affecting them.
  • Allocation of 5G spectrum in leading markets.
  • Factors leading to economies of scale.
  • Insight into flexible licensing. 

“Widespread harmonization of adequate spectrum could have a very positive effect in providing an important foundation for the timely deployment of 5G systems. This 5G Americas white paper provides information to encourage key stakeholders to embrace appropriate harmonized spectrum allocations to accommodate the variety of emerging 5G applications that together build the connected societies of the future,” said Reza Arefi, co-leader of the 5G Americas working group on 5G spectrum and Director, Spectrum Strategy at Intel Corporation.

5G Spectrum Recommendations was written by members of 5G Americas and is available for free download on the 5G Americas website. Co-leaders of the 5G spectrum working group are Reza Arefi, Director, Spectrum Strategy at Intel Corporation and Anders Svensson, Principal Solution Manager for Ericsson North America.

Taking one step at a time towards progression of 5G technologies, 5G Americas has partnered with the 5G Latin America conference in Rio de Janeiro from April 25-27, 2017 and the 5G North America conference taking place in Austin from May 15-17, 2017. 5G Latin America is the meeting point for operators across the region looking to develop and evolve their LTE networks, and map out the future road to 5G. Jose Otero, Director of Latin America and Caribbean, 5G Americas will deliver the opening keynote, Status of Broadband in Latin America: Technologies, Innovative Initiatives, Comparing Countries and Region as a Whole and serve on the Trends for the Telecoms Market panel.

At 5G North America, Chris Pearson, President, 5G Americas will be delivering the official opening keynote and market overview on behalf of 5G Americas as well as speaking on two panels at the event, 5G Standards Debate and Building the 5G Ecosystem.