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Ofcom is already planning for 5G, blistering speeds expected

Ofcom has opened up a consultation on the topic of 5G – the next step up from 4G, of course – inviting industry players to make their views known when it comes to the next generation of wireless communications.

In this consultation, Ofcom is looking at utilising the very high frequency spectrum above 6GHz, which it states could be suited for a number of uses, from stock trading through gaming and holographic projections, even.

Potential speeds of up to 10Gbps through to 50Gbps are expected to be achieved with 5G, way faster than 4G which averages at 15Mbps. However, 5G isn’t purely about speed, but also about finding a way to support the increasing amount of data traffic flying about the country.

Ofcom notes that 5G is likely to use large blocks of spectrum, which aren’t realistically available at lower frequencies – hence the plan to use bands above 6GHz. That spectrum is currently used for purposes including satellite broadcasting and scientific research.

Philip Marnick, Ofcom Spectrum Group Director, commented: “We want to explore how high frequency spectrum could potentially offer significant capacity for extremely fast 5G mobile data. This could pave the way for innovative new mobile services for UK consumers and businesses.”

The closing date for interested parties to make their opinions known for the consultation is 27 February.