As the key ingredient for wireless technology, radio frequency spectrum is an important resource. One of the most useful spectrum bands for 5G is mid-band, which ranges between 1 and 6 GHz, and offers a balance of speed, capacity, coverage and penetration for cellular wireless networks. 5G Americas, the voice of 5G and 4G LTE for the Americas, announced the release of “Mid-Band Spectrum Update,” which discusses several potential mid-bands and extended mid-bands that are needed to support applications for 5G and beyond.

Chris Pearson, president of 5G Americas said, “For 5G deployments, it is important that low, mid and high band spectrum are utilized to provide the optimal experience for users. Mid-band spectrum plays a key role in providing both capacity and coverage that can translate to increased speed for applications and use cases.” He further said, “A long term national spectrum plan in the U.S. will be paramount for economic and technology leadership.”

With total global demand for mobile network data traffic at 90 exabytes per month and increasing at 40 percent annually, new levels of spectral efficiency and flexibility are required by 5G and future networks. It is imperative that additional spectrum in the mid-band is allocated by governments, as it works exceptionally well for densely populated metropolitan areas where connectivity demand is high. mmWave and other high bands will also play a key role in servicing capacity demands, where offloading requirements from the mid-band spectrum can occur when and where needed.

“Mid-Band Spectrum Update” paper provides an overview of current and potential new mid-band and extended mid-band spectrum availability in the United States over the next several years, including technical characteristics and challenges, as well as policy and regulatory landscape.  

Some key topics surrounding receiver standards in this 5G Americas report include:

  • Mid-band spectrum overview
  • Current and Potential new mid-band and extended mid-band spectrum
  • Current and planned mid-band deployment status in the U.S.
  • Maximizing utility for 5G mid-band spectrum
  • Mid-band spectrum pipeline update.

Noman M Alam, director 5G Solutions, Ericsson said, “The main challenge to allocation of new mid-band spectrum is that none of the potential bands are clear and without incumbents. Making additional mid-band spectrum available is not an easy path but it can be made possible with identification of potential bands, planning for incumbents and all of the key stakeholders cooperating in the process.”

Karri Kuoppamaki, senior vice president, network technology development and strategy for T-Mobile U.S. said, “Mid-band spectrum is key for unlocking new applications and truly delivering on the promise of 5G. It is essential to have a long term spectrum pipeline to fuel growth in the 5G ecosystem, and this 5G Americas white paper is a good step toward understanding future potential mid-band spectrum opportunities.”