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South Korea Leads, But UK Ranks Well in 5G Leadership Index

Thursday, February 28th, 2019 (12:07 pm) - Score 979
5g mobile broadband users uk

Global consultancy firm Arthur D. Little has today published their new 5G Country Leadership Index, which benchmarks 40 countries by an analysis of technical infrastructure and tendency for 5G commercialisation. Overall the UK just creeps into the top ten, placing us on the border between “leaders” and “followers“.

The “leading” countries are identified as those that have 5G spectrum allocated, high performance backhaul infrastructure in place, have announced ambitious goals for 5G launch or launched already, and have successfully trialed multiple use-cases. Additionally, they should have demonstrated a “high willingness” to adopt new services and have the right level of competition to foster commercialisation.

Sadly we don’t get a country-by-country breakdown in the announcement, although given the above criteria we do know that the UK still has a fair bit of 5G spectrum left to allocate via Ofcom’s auction process (e.g. 700MHz and various other bands) and upgrades to backhaul are an on-going process. But in the other areas there has been a lot of activity (e.g. plenty of trials).

Broadly, South Korea is the front runner in all of the key fields, which isn’t much of a surprise given that they also lead in “full fibre” (FTTP) broadband connectivity and have a long history of early adoption with new mobile standards. Globally, ADL says gigabit broadband to the home, future corporate networks and digital industrial ecosystems are those models that seem to have driven 5G progress most significantly.

5g leadership index adl

ADL’s Managing Partner, Karim Taga, said: “5G networks are at the heart of future business competitiveness, making their deployment a key priority. Our analysis shows that South Korea is currently the clear leader but that many others are also moving beyond trials to launch 5G networks. We expect adoption to accelerate in Q3/4 2019 as leading brands have launched 5G smartphones and modems at Mobile World Congress this week. During this year, we foresee that dozens of operators will launch 5G services commercially, eventually improving their rankings. The race is on!

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