The Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA) announced the success of Phase II of the 5G Advanced trials project, conducted in cooperation with telecom service providers in the UAE. The aim was to unlock the full speed of 5G in the 6 GHz frequency range using the 400 MHz bandwidth, along with verifying the potential of this band in improving the user experience in the UAE and strengthening the UAE's position with respect to 6 GHz identification and use at the IMT level.
TDRA confirmed the achievement of the results set for this phase of trials, namely reaching 10 times the current speeds, which is considered to be the full throttle of the 5G-Advanced network in the world.
The significance of the 6 GHz frequency band lies in the fact that it marks an advanced step towards the widespread application of the IoT by reaching speeds of 10 gigabits per second, where the telecommunications network can accommodate thousands of small transmitters and receivers scattered across the smart city. Metaverse applications that are on the rise also require higher speeds than are available today.
Commenting on the successful completion of Phase II of 5G-Advanced trials, H.E. Majed Sultan al-Mesmar, TDRA's Director-General, said, "In this trial, we have used cutting-edge technology, through which we were able to make the most out of 5G, and we aspire through the results we have achieved to make a qualitative leap that not only improves the quality of services provided but also sets the stage for future innovations that contribute to driving digital transformation forward towards realizing the goals of Vision "We the UAE 2031.”
Lauding the service providers’ contribution to this development, H.E. al-Mesmar said, “We extend our thanks and appreciation to both the Emirates Telecommunications Group Company (e&) and the Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (du), who have always worked with us with the logic of national partnership and unity of purpose, in line with the country’s future strategies and the directives of our leadership.”
The Director-General added, "The exponential number of Internet users and the scientific advances witnessed by the world today require new speeds to accommodate the increasing load on networks and keep up with the high specifications of emerging technologies on the world stage, such as metaverse applications, to name a few. This new, globally unprecedented speed of 10 Gbps will lead to faster data transfer, ushering in a new era of high-quality streaming and seamless cloud services."
It is noteworthy that the implementation of Phase II of the 5G-Advanced trials project is also part of TDRA's efforts to support the initiatives and activities organized by the UAE government in 2023, being the "Year of Sustainability." Some recently launched studies have indicated that "the carbon footprint of future 5G mobile networks is expected to be lower if additional mid-band spectrum is made available.”
The UAE is considered the first country to reach this speed regionally and globally. Such a paradigm shift in data transfer speed will support many future projects at the UAE level, especially those that require highly sophisticated technologies (e.g., nanotech) and high internet speeds, such as remote diagnostics in healthcare or autonomous (self-driving) vehicle projects in transportation, as well as help in the management of some industrial installations, all of which serve to bring about a seamlessly connected and integrated digital world.
In 2022, TDRA launched a white paper on the study of industrial applications of fifth-generation mobile networks to outline the visions and objectives of adopting 5G mobile technologies, laws, use cases and everything related to the stages of standardization and spectrum, as well as the role of fifth-generation networks in developing work environments, industries, businesses, technology trends, intellectual property rights and sustainability.