The European Commission adopted a plan to harmonise the 26GHz band for wireless networks, a move it said finalises the EU-wide coordination of three pioneer bands (700MHz, 3.6GHz and 26GHz) for 5G.

In a statement, the regulator said that the harmonisation of spectrum is the “basis for cross-border wireless communication services and sets common technical conditions for use of these bands”. Harmonised technical conditions are intended to enable spectrum use by multiple 5G networks, while mitigating interference risk and ensuring compatibility with existing services (such as satellite services) and in adjacent bands.

While the 26GHz band has limitations when delivering coverage, the EC noted it offers the highest amount of spectrum and therefore the largest capacity of all 5G pioneer bands. Possible uses include fixed wireless access, high definition video and VR/AR.

The harmonisation of the band across Europe must be completed in all EU Member States by the end of March 2020, while “effective use” of at least 1GHz of the band will follow by the end of 2020 at the latest.