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3GPP fully embraces “5G” with new evolutionary logo

5G 3GPP logo evolution

© 3GPP

  • New logo for all 3GPP 5G standards work
  • No repeat of the LTE/4G confusion
  • Points to evolutionary path from LTE

For a surprising amount of time there was much speculation as to whether or not the 3GPP cellular standards group would go with the flow and adopt the term “5G”, or come up with an alternative that wasn’t already so bogged down with misinterpretation, unrealistic expectations and flagrant abuses of mis-marketing – even before the standard has been created. After all, 3GPP is still championing the use of “LTE” in its various iterations rather than using the term “4G”.

Well fear not, those of us who have already made land-grabs for exciting-sounding 5G URLs, as 3GPP has this morning unveiled the official logo for all of its future 5G-related standards work – and as you can see, the term “5G” takes centre place. It also bears an uncanny resemblance to the LTE family of logos, and that’s not by accident.

“The logo has a new wave pattern, but is a development of the existing LTE waves, using the green of the LTE-Advanced Pro version,” explained an entry on the group’s news page. “The idea is to keep a familiar design aspect with the use of plain black text and textured waves, but to make the logo stronger and sharper – ready for use on the new radio and next generation core specifications for 5G.”

This of course further strengthens the perception that 5G is an evolutionary path from LTE systems, rather than a revolutionary break from the past. That will please most, but not all. But then again, it’s not the exclusive task of 3GPP to develop 5G standards for submission to the ITU’s IMT-2020 process… although we’ve seen no sign of contributions from elsewhere. The fact that 3GPP has effectively “bagged” the term 5G – and by inference fully supports the use of the term in all of its work – is very significant.

“The use of the 5G logo on 3GPP specification cover sheets is intended to help the industry to identify at which point in time 5G features will appear,” explained the 3GPP. “It will be used on the relevant 5G Phase 1 specifications in Release 15 (complete by late 2018) and then the 5G Phase 2, Release 16 specifications, for completion in 2020. It will also be used for releases beyond, as it is probable that 5G will span a series of releases, as was the case with LTE, which started with Release 8 – continuing beyond Release 14.”

To all those who keep asking, “yes, but what exactly is 5G?”, this news moves us a little step closer. 

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