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Bangkok hosts ITU Workshop on "IMT for the Next Decade"
François Rancy
photo credit: © Eric Flogny
François Rancy
Director of the ITU Radiocommunication Bureau

“ ITU plays a leading role in establishing the standards and spectrum arrangements for the current IMT-2000 — or 3G — systems and for “IMT-Advanced”, which provides the global platform for the next generations of mobile broadband services. It is now time to review the initial forecasts of spectrum requirements and to assess what further actions may be required to realize the vast potential of global mobile broadband to connect the world. ”

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photo: AFP

The ITU Regional workshop on “IMT for the Next Decade”, which took place in Bangkok, Thailand on 21 March 2011, featured top-level experts from around the world, who came together to look at the market, services and technology required for the development of IMT for the next decade. ITU organized the workshop in close collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, Royal Government of Thailand. The workshop attracted over 170 participants from 28 countries.

Governments, regulators, industry stakeholders, academia and United Nations agencies stressed the necessity of further development of future mobile technologies and services, as well as access to sufficient spectrum, to ensure the widest availability of broadband services to all users.

ITU plays a leading role in establishing the standards and spectrum arrangements for the current IMT-2000 — or 3G — systems and for “IMT-Advanced”, which provides the global platform for the next generations of mobile broadband services. It is now time to review the initial forecasts of spectrum requirements and to assess what further actions may be required to realize the vast potential of global mobile broadband to connect the world. This review is being addressed in ITU’s Radiocommunication Sector (ITU–R) Study Group and Conference activities.

The workshop examined the trends in data traffic growth as a result of advanced services and terminals, such as smart phones, and addressed the potential of the Asia-Pacific region in the future mobile market, where it has the highest market share and growth rate. The success of the mobile sector can be emulated by mobile broadband to connect rural and remote areas in a cost-effective manner.

Experts at the workshop stressed that access to sufficient spectrum is essential to sustain and further stimulate the growth of mobile broadband in the Asia-Pacific region. The workshop also emphasized the role of ITU in technological and regulatory aspects of mobile broadband standardization activities, including work on IMT development within ITU–R Working Party 5D.

Demands for radio spectrum for broadcasting, wireless and mobile services, as well as for emergency communications, mean that radio spectrum management needs to be modernized to harness the potential offered by new technologies and services. According to ITU’s report Trends in Telecommunication Reform 2010–2011: Enabling tomorrow’s world, more than 143 countries had introduced 3G mobile services commercially by mid-2010. And many countries have been examining the next phase in the development of global mobile broadband: IMT-Advanced. These demands are particularly pressing in the Asia-Pacific region, home to around 62 per cent of the world population and nearly 46 per cent of the world’s mobile subscribers. The leading operators and manufacturers of IMT technologies are also based in this region.

 

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