Friday, 03 June 2016 16:27

AMTA sets up new 5G industry group to help guide next-gen mobile tech


The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) has set up its new 5G Group to "focus on policy, regulatory and technology issues related to next-gen 5G".

A brand new 5G working group has been launched in Australia, more than a year after a 5G World Alliance group was set up before the 2015 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, which you can read about in an iTWire article here.

Since that time there have been various 5G events globally, so why the need for an Australian group?

ATMA chiuef executive officer Chris Althaus explains: “It’s going to be a small industry group with a scope based on the opportunities and challenges within the 5G evolution and related policy, regulatory and technology issues – to be discussed from both domestic and international perspectives.”

“We also want it to be a reference point for industry to agree on consolidated Australian perspectives and to explore solutions to key issues such as reforms to enable efficient 5G network deployment within the legislative framework and the critical challenge of identifying, planning and allocating appropriate and sufficient spectrum for 5G,” continued Althaus.

He noted that "although the 5G global standard was still being developed expectations are that some demonstration capacity would be present in 2018 for events such as the Commonwealth Games in Australia and Winter Olympics in South Korea with commercial deployments not expected until around 2020".

Althaus added: “There are collaborative partnerships on 5G springing up around the world – there is major Public Private Partnership in the EU and in United Kingdom a 5G innovation centre is being created. We want to understand what those partnerships represent and bring an Australian perspective through contact and co-operation on 5G.”

AMTA notes that "many questions still remain as to what 5G will actually look like".

However, we are told that "one way of describing 5G is to look at key performance characteristics such as bandwidth and latency where 5G is expected to deliver at least 1Gbps and 1 millisecond respectively. For example, the GSMA has produced the graphic below to show this relationship in terms of services possibilities".


Althaus also stressed that "while the evolutionary path to 5G was the subject of much discussion and speculation, the industry would continue to focus strongly on delivery of innovation and services supported by 4G and 4.5G technologies and networks".

He said that "AMTA’s 5G Group would complement the Internet of Things Alliance, which was originally set up by Communications Alliance".

Althaus added the "5G Group would explore partnerships, which could involve the research agenda of government and its related scientific agencies, such as the Australian Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda".

To this end AMTA has already met Australia’s chief scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, who is deputy chair of Innovation and Science Australia.

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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