LIVE FROM 5G WORLD, LONDON: Verizon Wireless president Ronan Dunne (pictured, right) urged operators in Europe to expect the revival of unlimited tariffs, while backing 5G as a vital tool in supporting the associated jump in data usage.
During a keynote panel on the deployment and use cases for 5G, the executive noted the market dynamics of the US and geographical factors had contributed to the country being “more positive” on the network technology than some operators in Europe.
Dunne, who led Telefonica’s O2 network in the UK prior to joining Verizon, said before the launch of 5G, users on its unlimited plans were using 40GB of data a month with this rising at a rapid rate. “In those circumstances,” he added, “the first use case for 5G is the high capacity boost and a much lower cost to support it.”
The executive noted although this may not currently be a factor in Europe, “if you don’t think unlimited is coming to you, I’d make a small bet at coming back here at some stage where everyone in Europe has unlimited plans.”
In addition to supporting higher data usage, he highlighted the vast potential of 5G technology to provide fixed wireless access, one of the prime early uses of Verizon’s initial 5G network.
Prior to the Verizon Wireless chief taking the stage, 5G deployment advice was offered by Takki Yu, senior director at fellow early mover SK Telecom.
He emphasised the need to offer service quality guarantees to consumers and the importance of uncovering new use cases for the technology.
“We need to accelerate [finding new] use cases,” Yu said, adding the frequently cited examples of gaming, driverless cars and connected industry were not enough.
He recommended operators work with partners and other industries to discover exciting new uses for 5G technology.