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New report predicts 90% of the UK could have 5G by 2026

Wednesday, October 4th 2017 by Oprah Flash

A new study by Cambridge Judge Business School (CJBS) forecasts 90% of Brits will have access to 5G mobile broadband technology by 2026.

Within the next decade mobile broadband could reach ‘ultrafast’ speeds of up to 50Mbps.

Despite the good news researchers at the School predict that due to the “exponentially increasing costs” of the infrastructure, the remaining 10% are unlikely to reach the higher speeds.

The report warns broadband providers against promising their customers “unrealistic connectivity requirements in rural areas”.

Instead they should focus on providing consistent coverage for businesses and homes across the whole UK, says CJBS.

The study went on to suggest that without the help of a 'killer app' 5G infrastructure will only be built in urban and suburban areas of Britain and rural areas will get left out.

Experts at the CJBS say integrating new and existing systems would make 10Mbps a realistic goal in rural areas.

'Reliable connectivity'

Meeting this target would be in line with Universal Service Obligation guidelines for fixed broadband.

Speed test data analysed by Cable found the average broadband speed in Britain is 16.51Mbps

Dr Edward Oughton, research associate at Cambridge Judge Business School, said: “We don’t need higher and higher headline speeds, but what we do need is reliable connectivity – to ensure we can reap the productivity benefits of new digital applications, platforms and services.

“We haven’t been able to achieve this with 4G LTE in the UK as patchy reception often leads to disruption.

“Operators can struggle to deploy new base stations and the industry has been experiencing declining revenues, meaning there isn’t much capability for large scale infrastructure investment.”

Recently, Cable.co.uk reported on Vodafone developing new mobile technology described as the building block of 5G.

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