University of Surrey says 5G will provide more efficient and environmentally friendly use of radio spectrum
Just as 4G is launching in the UK, £35 million is being invested in a new 5G research centre at the University of Surrey.
Funded with £11.6m from the government and the rest from private telecoms companies, the centre will be used to develop 5G technology for the UK and try to bring new business to the country.
The benefits of 5G are still unclear. In an interview last year Hakan Eriksson, chief technology officer at telecoms giant Ericsson, said that it had reached the limit of what could be done with mobile broadband.
Eriksson added that he did not see the point in 5G.
Professor Rahim Tafazolli from the University of Surrey was more optimistic about the prospects for 5G networks, saying they could offer more than just speedier downloads.
He said that demand for mobile broadband was increasing all the time and the need for 5G was "urgent". Professor Tafazolli also claimed that 5G could make better use of limited radio spectrum and be more environmentally friendly.
"The introduction of new 5G advanced technologies [will] maximise the use of the limited available radio spectrum and provide for greener technologies and solutions," he said.
5G is still some way off, with experts suggesting it won't arrive much before 2020.
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