ITU "reveals" 5G plan, coins IMT-2020 term

ITU “reveals” 5G plan, coins IMT-2020 term

22 JUN 2015

United Nations agency ITU claims to have established an overall roadmap for 5G development, including goals, process and timeline but, while unveiling “IMT-2020” as the name it will use for the mobile standard, the announcement was sparse on details.

The announcement followed a meeting of an ITU-R (ITU Radiocommunication Sector) working party in San Diego that discussed the organisation’s vision for 5G.

Media reports immediately after the meeting said the ITU decided on peak speeds for 5G of 20 Gb/s. However, as Inside 5G pointed out, nothing in the actual documentation supports this claim. It will be another year to 18 months before technical requirements are delivered.

The use of the IMT-2020 moniker does confirm the standard as a member of the organisation’s existing family of standards for International Mobile Telecommunications systems (IMT-2000 and IMT-Advanced), which are the basis for 3G and 4G.

The new name will be formally adopted at the ITU-R Radiocommunication Assembly, which meets in October 2015.

The next step is establishing detailed technical performance requirements for the radio systems to support 5G, taking into account future scenarios and use cases. Then the ITU will specify the evaluation criteria for assessment of candidate radio interface technologies to join the IMT-2020 family.

These new systems, set to become available in 2020, will usher in “new paradigms in connectivity” in mobile broadband systems to support, for example, extremely high definition video services, real time low latency applications and the Internet of Things (IoT), the ITU said.

“The buzz in the industry on future steps in mobile technology – 5G – has seen a sharp increase, with attention now focused on enabling a seamlessly connected society in the 2020 timeframe and beyond that brings together people along with things, data, applications, transport systems and cities in a smart networked communications environment,” stated ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao.


Richard Handford

Richard is the editor of Mobile World Live’s money channel and a contributor to the daily news service. He is an experienced technology and business journalist who previously worked as a freelancer for many publications over the last decade including...

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