In mid-November, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved a plan to introduce the 5G cellular standard in the country.
However,many experts and representatives of the main cellular operators believe that our country is still ready to introduce new standards only morally, while technically we are far behind. Participants in the cellular communications market have suggested that Ukraine will be ready to introduce new technologies no earlier than in two to three years, but not in a year, as planned by the Cabinet of Ministers.
The research company inCITES Consulting conducted a study of readiness for the introduction of 5G technologies in 38 European countries. According to the results of the study, analysts expressed confidence that Ukraine has a high level of technical education, but very poorly developed legislation and infrastructure. According to these indicators, we took the penultimate place in the ranking. We have a high level of technical education, but infrastructure and legislation are in the penultimate place.
Now about the parameters used to compile the rating.
According to the condition “Infrastructure and Technology” Ukraine was put on the last place due to the large gap from other countries in the introduction of 4G technology (this period is about 8 years). Analysts considered the efforts of cellular operators to roll out network coverage to be insufficient.
This approach is due to the fact that, according to experts, 4G infrastructure should become the basis for creating a fifth generation network.
The Verkhovna Rada adopted laws to simplify access to infrastructure for telecom operators. However, the parameter “quick access to electricity” in our country is still much worse than in other European countries.
InCITES Consulting specialists noted that there are many high-level technical specialists in Ukraine. Therefore, in terms of “Human capital”, our country is in 16th place out of 38. At the same time, Ukraine not only received the highest score among its Eastern European neighbors, but also surpassed such Western European states as Great Britain, Spain, Portugal and Italy.
It is important that the experts noted the high level of training of specialists, which will be necessary when integrating the new technology with the existing ones.
Now about Ukraine’s readiness to introduce a new communication standard.
The Cabinet of Ministers decided to release two frequency bands on 5G – 700 MHz and 3400-3800 MHz. The first parameter is designed to provide wider coverage, the second -higher bandwidth and data transfer rate.
The government has announced its intention to announce a 5G competition in a year. And from 2022, the first elements of a new communication standard are exepted to appear in Ukraine.
For Lifecell, Kyivstar and Vodafone, such a solution will cost billions of hryvnias. Lifecell representatives came up with a proposal for a free allocation of licenses to operate in 5G. But these licenses promise huge budget revenues. And the government is unlikely to refuse them.
Representatives of the three operators agreed that, first, it is necessary to fully complete the introduction of 4G technologies. Not enough for this year.
The government’s intentions sound seriously. This is evidenced by the intention to free up frequency bands. The project is also very important from the point of view of involvement in advanced technologies.
But with the financial one. Cellular operators will find the billions needed to introduce 5G. But the money spent will need to be compensated. And if not at the expense of subsidies from the budget, then from other sources. So in the end, consumers will pay for everything. And in the current difficult time, the population has where to spend money, with the exception of cellular communications.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.