The UK’s Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) has published its new Wireless Infrastructure Strategy which, amongst other things, sets out ‘a new headline ambition’ for the country to have nationwide coverage of standalone (SA) 5G to all populated areas by 2030. According to the government body, its newly-published strategy lays out the policy framework that the authorities will implement in order to achieve this target, with the DSIT saying it also aims to remove barriers to investment and stimulate demand.
Among the other key policies set out in the strategy, the DSIT has set out it stall to improve coverage reporting, saying this should ‘more accurately reflects consumers’ actual experience’. To that end, it has called on local telecoms regulator Ofcom to: hold mobile network operators (MNOs) to account through on-the-ground signal testing; improve the accuracy of its coverage reporting through increased use of crowdsourced data; and consider how it can improve the accuracy of reporting of network performance levels in rural areas and for indoor coverage.
Meanwhile, the Wireless Infrastructure Strategy also includes plans for GBP40 million (USD50 million) of new funding to establish 5G Innovation Regions across the UK, with this reportedly aimed at encouraging 5G take-up in the public sector and in industry. Alongside this, looking ahead to the next generation of mobile broadband technology, the DSIT has said under its ‘6G strategy’ the government will invest up to GBP100 million in research and development to ‘make sure [it plays] an active role in shaping the standards and driving the adoption of future telecoms technologies’.
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