- In most countries there are 3 mobile technologies: 2G, 3G & 4G and 5G is currently being deployed, however not all technologies work in all spectrum band.
- The whole range of spectrum is divided up into bands, each band has a specific name, 900 band works in most cases in 2G and 3G, while 1800 band works in 2G and 4G, those same band will also be used in 5G in the futur.
- Within the customers base, there normally exists a population of devices supporting all or a subset of these technologies and all or a subset of the spectrum bands which means that there are differing volumes of traffic on each spectrum band.
Focus on 5G bands:
If we would like to focus on 5G native bands, we can find 700 Mhz, 3.6Ghz band and 26Ghz band:
- The 700 MHz band, already used by some operators for 4G, has the benefit of enabling a good penetration inside buildings and good coverage with speeds comparable to those of monoband 4G.
- The 3.6 GHz (3.4 – 3.8 GHz) called Mid-bands typically offer a good mixture of coverage and capacity benefits. The majority of commercial 5G networks are relying on spectrum within the 3.3-3.8 GHz range.It helps to significantly ramp up speeds despite lower penetration inside buildings and lower reach than the 700 MHz band.
- The 26 GHz (24.25 – 27.5 GHz) band is the highest frequency used in mobile technology and it can deliver very high speeds, comparable to those of FTTH (Fibre). On the other hand, its ability to penetrate buildings is very low as it cannot go through obstacles and its reach is limited to a few hundred metres.
- 5G needs spectrum across low, mid and high spectrum bands to deliver widespread coverage and support a wide range of use cases. All three ranges have important roles to play
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