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New Report: Australia's 5G Mobile Pathway to 2020

18 October 2017

An important analysis of latest generation mobile telecommunications; 5G Mobile – Enabling Businesses and Economic Growth, was released today at an event in Parliament House, Canberra, with a special address from Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, Minister for Communications.

The report from Deloitte Access Economics commissioned by the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) details that:

  • facilitation and roll out of 5th generation mobile telecommunications (5G) is expected to further drive Australia’s digital economy and add to the already significant (and growing) $34 billion in long-term productivity benefits from mobile
  • annual network spend from mobile providers would reach up to $5.7 billion and likely to grow in FY2017-18
  • examples of sectors and industries that will benefit from 5G such as manufacturing, energy and utilities, automotive and transport, financial services, health, education and media / entertainment
  • the expansion of products and applications expected to accelerate under 5G – for both large industry, small to medium enterprises and consumers – based on new opportunities arising from applications such as artificial intelligence, robotics, drones, Internet of Things, self-driving cars, plus virtual and augmented reality.

“5G is the next evolution in mobile technologies which will offer unprecedented productivity and connectivity enabling impacts for Australia’s economy and society. This represents an evolution that will feature the ‘industrial internet’ which will greatly expand and diversify the range and impact of mobile applications and services,” said Chris Althaus, CEO, AMTA.

“5G will be a core element of increasing connectivity that will enable innovations such as the Internet of Things, enhanced mobile broadband, massive and critical machine communications - all essential to a successful digital economy and networked society” he added.

"Every generation of mobile technology has generated very real economic and social benefits for Australia, across public and private sectors and individuals and communities across in urban, regional and rural areas across the country,” said Deloitte Access Economics partner and lead report author, John O’Mahony.

“This will certainly be the case with 5G – if it is rolled out and harnessed in the right way,” he said.

“5G will require significant investment, but this investment will also deliver significant returns in areas as diverse as time savings, enhanced opportunities for businesses and governments to develop new products and services that go to the very core of the way we do things.”

The report also identifies a key role for government to develop a clear 5G policy agenda – a commitment announced by Minister Fifield last week in the Government’s 5G Directions Paper.

“The Government announcing their 5G road map which includes immediate priorities targeting spectrum availability, streamlining network deployment regulation and fit-for-purpose regulatory frameworks has strong support from the industry and very much reflects the key themes articulated and expanded in 5G Mobile – Enabling Businesses and Economic Growth report,” said Althaus.

This report builds on previous reports from AMTA’s Mobile Nation series and can be found here.

Photo: Stuart MacIntyre (Director of Optus Business Technology and AMTA Chairman), Senator Mitch Fifield (Minister for Communications), Chris Althaus (AMTA CEO) and John O’Mahony (Deloitte Access Economics partner and lead report author).

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Final NTP results cannot confirm mobile phone cause cancer in humans

The long awaited final results of the decade-spanning US National Toxicology Program on radiofrequency energy exposure has found no consistent effects in male and female mice and rats exposed to mobile phone signals for their whole life (2 years). However, in a sub-section of the study, researchers found that at the highest doses for the longest periods of time, cellphone radiation might cause a rare cancer in male rats. “High exposure to radiofrequency radiation (RFR) in rodents resulted in tumours in tissues surrounding nerves in the hearts of male rats, but not female rats or any mice, according to draft studies from the National Toxicology Program (NTP),” said a press release from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences where the program is headquartered.

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AMTA Annual Report 2017

In 2017, the strong demand for mobile services continues to have an impact on our economy and society as the industry shifts its focus in preparation for 5G, the next generation of mobile technology. AMTA’s latest Annual Report includes the following highlights: As industry prepares for 5G the need for regulatory reform in spectrum management and network infrastructure deployment is increasingly urgent. 5G Mobile – Enabling Businesses and Economic Growth Report by Deloitte Access Economics found that 5G is expected to further drive Australia’s digital economy. It will add to the already significant (and growing) $34 billion in long-term productivity benefits from mobile; and annual network spend from mobile providers is expected to reach $5.7 billion in FY2017-18. The MCF has focused on an agenda of legislative reform to support the efficient and flexible deployment of network infrastructure.

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How will 5G improve network performance

While the technical standards for 5G are still being developed, experts agree that 5G will offer: Latency of less than 1ms; Ability to deliver speeds of up to 10 Gbps and beyond; Energy efficiency in running 1000s of devices; and Improved network capacity by enabling millions of low bandwidth devices to connect simultaneously. Where 4G focussed on providing improved speed and capacity for individual mobile phone users, 5G will enable more industrial applications, and could be a major technological driver in industrial digitalisation. For more information about 5G read our latest report from Deloitte Access Economics. Download the complete report.