All Latin American countries fail to reach ITU spectrum recommendations

Via 5G Americas Newsroom

Jun 21, 2017

5G Americas Publishes Report Analyzing Major Shortfall of Spectrum Allocations in Latin America

In Latin America, there are no countries that have allocated at least the 35 percent of the 1960 MHz of radio spectrum that the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) recommends by 2020 for an optimal mobile broadband performance (as of March 2017) with negative consequences for consumers and limiting the growth potential of the industry and the economies of those countries.

BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON, June 21, 2017. – Currently, only one Latin American country, Brazil, has awarded more than 30 percent of the radio spectrum suggested by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) for the year 2020. In its ITU-R M.2078 report, ITU suggested that, by 2020, 1960 MHz of radio spectrum should be allocated for an optimal performance of the IMT-2000 technologies (commercially known as 3G) and IMT-Advanced technologies (known as 4G) and at least 35 percent of that amount of spectrum should be available for mobile broadband to achieve basic levels of service quality. 5G Americas analyzed the allocations, by country, in the Latin America region in its report published today, Analysis of ITU Spectrum Recommendations in Latin America , and concludes that the spectrum shortage throughout the region will have negative consequences-- for consumers, in the development of the economy and in the potential growth of industry.

Brazil has currently allocated the equivalent of 31.1 percent of the 1960 MHz that ITU suggests by 2020. Some of the other countries that have awarded the larger amounts of spectrum for the Latin America region are Chile (24 percent), Mexico (23.7 percent), Argentina (23.6 percent), Costa Rica (23.5 percent), and Nicaragua (21.4 percent), according to the recently published 5G Americas Analysis of ITU Spectrum Recommendations in Latin America paper.

A chart, Percentage of Spectrum Allocated according to the ITU Recommendation for 2015 and 2020 is available for download .

The 5G Americas report highlights that the largest number of LTE deployments in the world took place after operators received more spectrum. Technologies such as LTE benefit from wider radio channels, because they allow better efficiency, which is reflected in benefits like a higher rate of data transfer. Additionally, spectrum allocation to dedicated data channels allows operators to offer better transmission speeds for mobile broadband, increasing user satisfaction and helping to achieve the governments’ goals of extending the access to Internet in their countries.

“One of the benefits of increasing spectrum allocation is the efficient performance of mobile networks, especially in densely populated urban areas, where spectrum limitations worsen with other restrictions such as delays in the authorizations for the installation of new infrastructure, antenna towers and other technologies,” explained Jose Otero, Director of Latin America and the Caribbean for 5G Americas.

The white paper Analysis of ITU Spectrum Recommendations in Latin America ** concludes that regulators and government authorities in Latin America must remain diligent in understanding the importance of spectrum availability for mobile services for citizenship, to boost economic growth and connectivity in their countries. This is especially important in rural and remote areas, where wired connectivity is not available and wireless technologies are the only viable alternative to bring connectivity to the people. It is equally important that the region works altogether in a harmonized spectrum plan to benefit from the economies of scale of chipsets, devices and infrastructure, as well as for LTE data roaming.

5G Americas Analysis of ITU Spectrum Recommendations in Latin America ** report is available for free download on the 5G Americas website.

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