Samsung, Ericsson, NTT DoCoMo early leaders in 5G race

5G to increase data transmission speeds up to several hundred times faster than 4G

The wireless industry is finally deploying 4G networks on a large scale to provide mobile broadband capabilities. But the industry is already demonstrating 5G speeds, and Samsung, Ericsson (NYSE: ERIC), and NTT DoCoMo are the early leaders, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.

Mobile 5G technology promises to increase data transmission speeds up to several hundred times faster than 4G, as well as support a large number of connected devices, longer battery life and reduced network latency.

Samsung is the latest industry player to announce a 5G technology demonstration. Last month, Samsung made a breakthrough in transmitting large volumes of data over long distances using a broad band of frequencies, the New York Times reported.

"Samsung's latest innovation is expected to invigorate research into 5G cellular communications across the world. The company believes it will trigger the creation of international alliances and the timely commercialization of related mobile broadband services," Samsung said in a release that was quoted by the newspaper.

Ericsson and NTT DoCoMo took the early lead in 5G research, but the Chinese telecom gear industry is not far behind, having set up an industrial group to promote 5G research, Strategy Analytics related.

United States chip firms Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) and Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) will be gearing up for 5G soon and should be watched, the research firm noted.

"The official process of 5G standardization should be launched in 2015-2016 timeframe, to be kicked off at ITU-R WRC-15. So all current '5G' activities are only a warm-up before the official process," related Guang Yang, senior analyst for wireless networks and platforms.

"But these warm-up activities are important for the industry to build technical consensus and to prepare the ecosystem. It is also a key period for the technology giants in the industry to predict the core components of the future system and to secure related patents," Yang added.

The International Telecommunication Union holds an international conference every three to four years, known as the World Radiocommunication Conference, to sort out international radio frequency issues, including standards for mobile networks. The next WRC is scheduled to be held in Geneva in 2015. The 5G standard is expected to be one of the topics of discussion for international delegates.  

For more:
- check out Strategy Analytics release
- read the New York Times article
- see the ITU WRC 2015 web site

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