The frequency band is the common natural good with limited resources. This is the reason why we have organizations that are involved in its management. They have to also think about frequency bands for the future mobile technologies like 5G. A few days ago, the European Union agreed that the 700 MHz band will no longer be used by terrestrial TV and it will be dedicated to mobile Internet. There were even suggestions that it may be used for future 5G systems.

It is obvious that the band 700 MHz remaining after analogue television is a tasty morsel for mobile operators. This would allow them to build base stations, which would provide mobile Internet on very large areas. The principle is simple, the transmitter operating at lower frequency has a longer range. Therefore, all enjoying the last agreement. On 14th December, representatives of the Slovak Presidency of the European Parliament and the European Commission agreed the text of the decision harmonizing the future use of the 700 MHz frequency band in the European Union.

After 30th June 2020, the 700 MHz band will be used for mobile Internet.

Fortunately, terrestrial broadcasters will still use the 470 – 694 MHz frequencies. Therefore, you will not have to buy new antenna. The European Union recognized that there is no longer need of spending these frequencies on terrestrial TV. Digital television is much better to use, because it allows us to transmit higher number of channels in the same bandwidth. Therefore, the 694 – 790 MHz frequencies will be used for wireless data services. The schedule includes the possibility of postponement of two years, which is very beneficial for several countries. They will have to cooperate with their neighbors outside the European Union (e.g. with Ukraine and Russia), to coordinate the use of the 700 MHz band in border areas. Radio waves do not recognize territorial boundaries, so it is possible to watch Russian and Ukrainian TV channels in the border areas of other countries.

People speculate that 700 MHz band will be dedicated for 5G systems.

European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip stated that the 700 MHz band should be used for Internet services with large ranges and high-speed data transmission. This will allow the spread of Internet access in Europe, including in rural areas. Mr. Vice-President added that this decision will pave the way for a development of a new generation of mobile systems, i.e. 5G. However, media over interpreted this statement, because there are voices that 5G in Europe will operate at the 700 MHz band.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The new systems will offer enormous speeds (up to 12 Gbit/s). Therefore, it will use very wide radio channels. Less than 100 MHz available between the frequencies from 697 MHz to 790 MHz is not enough for 5G. Therefore, the first device of a new generation will operate at the 28 GHz band. Qualcomm has already announced a new modem type. 700 MHz band will be probably used by the LTE and LTE-Advanced systems, which in the future will coexist and cooperate with the new 5G technology.

Source: Telecom TV

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