"ePTC", the Perpetual Missing Use Case
In March 2018, the UK Government announced plans for an 5G Urban Connected Communities project (UCC), which will see the development of a large-scale testbed in a UK city. The UCC project will:
1) design wireless infrastructure in a major city that delivers high quality connectivity and allow new 5G applications to be trialled in a number of sectors;
2) allow industry to test different deployment models for 5G infrastructure and help inform the development of policy and regulation to support 5G deployment;
3) support economic growth and improve the quality of life using 5G to meet people’s connectivity needs.
The objectives of UCC are well-founded and essential to facilitate the much needed focus on a phased and commerically viable 5G roll out plan.
Connecting people and closing the digital divide is a key policy objective for most governments in developed and developing countries and mobile is in the forefront of technologies to close the gap. Nonetheless, despite various initiatives to address ubiquitous connectivity in areas other than urban, and, in particular on major transportation routes and other non-urban populated areas, the implementation progress has been rather slow and in some cases non-existent.
The chart below shows the GSMA latest mobile connectivity figures across various regions which are somewhat unexpected considering the mobile market and technical developments over the past three decades. The figures do not consider the extent of “Infrastructure” and “Affordability” which we will touch on in this digest. The ITU also finds that around 85% and 15% of households in least developed countries and developed countries do not have access to internet; mobile is the technology of choice due to minimal fixed infrastructure.