Much more than just gigabits: the promises of 5G

5G is not a straightforward mobile network evolution as experienced with 3G and 4G. This is a technological step change intended to meet a sharp increase in connectivity requirements and develop new services to benefit people, society and the environment.

Bien plus que des gigabits : les promesses de la 5G

It starts today

We launched our first commercial 5G network in Romania in November 2019 in the country’s three largest cities. Most of our European countries will roll out a commercial network in 2020 as frequencies are made available by the various regulatory authorities. This will be done in addition to existing networks. New advanced services made possible by 5G will start to be launched from 2023.

A smarter, higher performing network

With the fifth generation of mobile networks, our network will be faster but also smarter and more efficient. It will achieve much higher speeds than 4G with a more homogeneous signal over the entire cell and, from 2023, much lower latency.

Thanks to these characteristics, 5G will disrupt the mobile experience and open the way for new uses, for example in education and leisure with 360° immersive content combining virtual and augmented reality.

An alternative to fixed broadband

One of 5G’s main strengths lies in the new frequency bands, which in just a few years will compete with optical fibre capacity. Homes in some countries will therefore benefit from high-speed broadband without going through a fixed network, and this “leapfrogging” represents a real opportunity in areas where the infrastructure is underdeveloped. Wireless connectivity can benefit businesses by connecting remote industrial sites, mobile sites or pop-up stores, as well as smart city players and urban infrastructure. In the case of a fixed network outage, it could also be a vital alternative to fibre for critical uses such as telemedicine.

Real-time business uses

Where 5G will make the biggest difference is likely to be in the B2B market. The technology allows companies to use data as soon as it is produced so they can stay more agile, reactive and closer to customer needs.

As a multi-service network, 5G can adapt to very different business processes and devices: “augmented” smartphones, cameras, sensors, refrigerators, industrial robots, connected autonomous cars – expect to see them all from 2023.

Ensuring network deployment compliance

We are gradually deploying 5G on existing 4G sites to supplement existing networks in Europe, according to frequency availability and changing requirements.

We are using new, more eco-efficient and higher performing antennas that will only be activated according to users’ needs.

Finally, our deployments meet the regulatory thresholds defined by the WHO, and in accordance with local radio wave guidelines. They also comply with the European standard for maximum smartphone Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) values.

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