With global companies fiercely competing to launch mobile commercial 5G services in advance, countries are also seeking to cooperate in secret to dominate the information and communications technology (ICT) convergence industry in advance. They are now trying to jointly set up technical standards and cooperate on frequency policies in order to develop 5G convergence services, such as ecosystem construction, autonomous vehicle, telemedicine system and smart city, while competing one another.
The Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning (MSIP) announced that it discussed ways for 5G policy cooperation with government officials and academics and industry experts from the U.S., Japan, China and the European Union at the Global 5G event held in Tokyo for two days from May 24.
The Global 5G event, the third of its kind following the ones in Beijing in China and Rome in Italy last year, brought together nearly 500 people from global mobile carriers and manufacturers, including SK Telecom and KT, and governments like the MSIP. They shared the latest trend of 5G convergence services, such as automobile, medical care, education and manufacturing, in each country and discussed cooperation plans to create the ICT convergence ecosystem. The also saw 5G convergence services, including smart production and smart traffic, unveiled by NTT Docomo by connecting with the Wireless Technology Park 2017, the largest event in Japan focused on research and development of wireless communication technologies.
The MSIP currently runs “5G convergence service research team” consisting of 20 academics and industry experts and researchers, seeking for ways to build the test bed and improve regulations for 5G convergence services like smart factory, smart city and driverless cars. An official from the Information and Communication Technology Policy Division under the MSIP said, “We shared our policies related to technology, standardization and ecosystem as well as 5G services which are the key foundation to realize intelligence information society. We saw considerable interest from participants in 5G autonomous buses, which will be run at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games to be held in February next year, and realistic media service from a player point of view.”
During the Global 5G event, countries made a war of nerves to take the advantageous position in standardization through the international cooperation system. In fact, 5G Americas, the industry trade association established by FCC, which is in charge of frequency policy, and Verizon, in the U.S. is the leading in 5G standardization in cooperation with international bodies such as the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), International Telecommunication Union and Global System for Mobile communication Association (GSMA).
China and Japan are also actively putting in their own experts in a bid to expand their influence in the 3GPP.
Some industry sources pointed out that South Korea, China and Japan should strengthen the cooperation system for 5G. An official from the 5G Forum said, “Since one group or country cannot build up the 5G system, international cooperation systems are required before standardization. South Korea should consider joint services with China and Japan for successful hosting of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics.”