5G spectrum guide – everything you need to know

16 February 2018

To help navigate spectrum needs for next-generation mobile networks, this 5G spectrum guide collects reports, infographics and positions from the GSMA.

Trials are already showing what great potential 5G networks have. But significant amounts of widely harmonised spectrum is a must for this potential to come true.

For example, pioneering ultra-high speeds and the lowest latencies are dependent on access to millimetre wave spectrum. In this range, 26 GHz and 28 GHz have emerged as two of the most important bands. They offer the widest harmonisation with minimised user equipment complexity.

Mobile operators also need access to spectrum below 1 GHz as well as between 1 GHz and 6 GHz. In the latter group, the 3.5 GHz range is getting a lot of traction. Any country that wants to take the lead on 5G rollouts should make it available to operators as soon as possible.

However, success isn’t just about allocating new spectrum bands. The GSMA calls on governments and regulators to prioritise mobile broadband services – above revenue maximisation – when awarding new frequencies. High spectrum prices threaten affordable, high quality mobile broadband services whether for 5G or other generations.

It the end, this is something regulators and governments have to get right if they want their country or region to be at the forefront of 5G innovation

For now, the GSMA 5G spectrum guide includes:

5G Spectrum Policy Positions

The 5G spectrum guide starts with the GSMA’s key policy positions. They focus on areas where governments, regulators and the mobile industry should cooperate to make 5G a success.

The full position paper is available here in English, French or Spanish.

There is also a new infographic. In addition to the positions, it details recent developments. Click here to download it in English, French or Spanish.

Mobile Industry view on WRC-19 Agenda Item 1.13

WRC-19 will be vital to realising the vision for 5G. The work at WRC-19 (centred around AI 1.13) will look at spectrum for mobile broadband in frequencies between 24.25 and 86 GHz.

Download the report in English here, in French here and in Spanish here

26 GHz and 28 GHz are both needed for 5G

In this infographic we take a look at countries and regions that are trialling and supporting  26 GHz and or 28 GHz. It also details bands plans and use cases.

The infographic is available here in English. It is also available in French and in Spanish.

Considerations for the 3.5 GHz IMT range 

Operators need new spectrum to keep up with growing mobile data and coverage demands. The 3.5 GHz IMT range offers an ideal opportunity to meet this demand. The band will be one of the first frequencies to carry 5G traffic, but first it must be licensed.

Download the report in English here, in French here and in Spanish here

The 5G era in the US (NEW)

This report from GSMA Intelligence explores the current landscape and the future outlook for 5G in the US. It focuses on network deployment, spectrum, use cases, and policy and regulation.

The full report is available here