The international standards for next-generation 5G mobile telecommunications have been finally completed.
Some 50 major players of the global telecom industry, including global network operators and network equipment and smartphone manufacturers, finalized the 5G “standalone (SA)” specifications at the 80th Wireless General Assembly of the 3GPP held in La Jolla of the US.
The 3GPP, which stands for the 3rd Generation Partnership Project, is an international telecom standardization body that unites seven standard development organizations (ARIB, ATIS, CCSA, ETSI, TSDSI, TTA, TTC).
Under the auspices of the 3GPP, the global telecom industry has been working together to develop the 5G standards for the past three years.
Last December, telecom companies completed the 5G “non-standalone (NSA)” specifications, enabling producers of chips, devices and network equipment to develop early 5G products that partially leveraged existing 4G/LTE networks.
The SA specifications enable companies to develop their products based on the standalone 5G standard that doesn’t depend upon 4G.
The completion of the 5G international standards is expected to accelerate production of commercial 5G terminals and equipment and construction of networks. Global carriers and manufacturers will build commercial equipment such as base stations and terminals in accordance with the global standards set by the 3GPP.
Korean mobile operators and equipment manufacturers played a significant role in finalizing the 5G standards.
SK Telecom announced in a press release that it contributed to the completion of the standards by sharing its 5G technologies, including electric wave transfer and reception technology, network virtualization technology, and ultra low latency data transmission technology.
"Global telecom service providers and manufacturers could complete the 5G global standards in a timely manner by working together,” said Park Jin-hyo, director of the ICT Technology Research Center at SK Telecom. “We will continue to lead mobile innovation together with all companies participating in a 5G ecosystem."
KT, for its part, announced the final version of a 28GHz frequency band research report at the general congress. The report covered frequency technology in both the 5G SA and NSA modes.
According to KT, the completion of the report means that the 28GHz band, which is one of the 5G frequency bands in Korea, has been officially recognized as the world's first ultra-high frequency standard 5G band.
At the same meeting, KT proposed convergence technology standards between 3.5GHz and 28GHz bands, both of which are Korea's commercial 5G frequency bands, on behalf of Korean operators.
"In addition to technical standards, KT has world-class technology in all areas of 5G technology," said Seo Chang-seok, a managing director of Network Strategy Headquarters at KT. "KT plans to launch the world's first commercial 5G service in March of 2019 based on its 5G technological prowess."
LG U+ added that the company contributed to the standardization by leading discussions on 5G commercialization including the approval of the combination of domestic LTE frequencies and 5G frequencies and proposing device technology standards and interoperation between 5G frequencies.