Archived Newsroom • Press Release
New milestones reached in radiocommunications
ITU Radiocommunication Assembly concludes
Geneva, 20 January 2012 – The ITU Radiocommunication
Assembly concluded today after deliberating for a week on new directions in
radiocommunications. Held every three to four years, the Radiocommunication
Assembly deliberated the future direction of radiocommunications and reached
significant decisions that will impact the future of radiocommunications
worldwide in an increasingly wireless environment.
The Radiocommunication Assembly (RA-12) was chaired by Mr A.R. Jamieson (New
Zealand). Over 500 participants from 102 countries attended the Assembly.
RA-12 approved a series of Recommendations and Resolutions that established
the IMT-Advanced technologies and initiated further studies for the development
of global mobile broadband communications.
ITU Secretary-General Hamadoun Touré said, “The Radiocommunication Assembly,
like the World Radiocommunication Conference starting next week, represents an
important landmark in the life of ITU’s Radiocommunication Sector. This Assembly
has once again demonstrated the central role that the Radiocommunication Sector
plays in the global development of information and communication technologies.”
IMT-Advanced: New milestone in global mobile
Specifications for the next step in mobile broadband wireless technology –
IMT-Advanced – were agreed by the Assembly.
With the completion of an intensive programme developed by ITU’s
Radiocommunication Sector (ITU-R) to stimulate global development of the future
IMT technologies and following a detailed evaluation against stringent technical
and operational criteria, ITU has determined that "LTE-Advanced" and "WirelessMAN-Advanced"
should be accorded the official designation of IMT-Advanced.
IMT-Advanced systems include new capabilities that go beyond IMT-2000, widely
deployed since 2000 and referred to as 3G mobile technology. ITU has now
specified the standards for IMT-Advanced, the next step in global wireless
IMT-Advanced provides comprehensive support for broadband wireless data and
brings major improvements. These include increased spectrum efficiency to handle
more users at higher data rates per radio channel; a fully packet-based
architecture for reduced costs; lower latency leading to more responsive
Internet and multimedia applications; improved radio resource management and
control to enhance quality of service, and new capabilities for the radio
interface such as wideband radio channels and multiple-input and multiple-output
(MIMO) for the use of multiple antennas at both the transmitter and receiver end
to improve communication performance.
Continuous time standard
The RA-12 also decided to conduct further studies related to the development
of a continuous time standard in order to address the concerns of countries that
use the current system of the leap second in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
The decision was reached to ensure that all the technical options related to the
issue are fully addressed. These studies will involve further discussions within
the ITU membership and with other organizations that have an interest in the
matter related to the suppression of the leap second and will be referred to the
next Radiocommunication Assembly and World Radiocommunication Conference
scheduled for 2015.
Radiocommunication Assembly sets plans for
RA-12 also approved Resolutions to focus studies on new radiocommunication
techniques and applications, such as cognitive radio systems, and on the
potential for radiocommunications to act as a catalyst to reduce the impact of
human activity on the environment.
RA-12 also agreed on changes to streamline the working methods of the ITU
Radiocommunication Sector in adopting recommendations and elected the chairmen
and vice-chairmen of the Study Groups that will conduct the work in the next
The Radiocommunication Assembly provides the necessary technical bases for
the work of the World Radiocommunication Conferences, sets future work
programmes on many technical issues of a worldwide character in the field of
radiocommunications, and approves worldwide radiocommunication standards (ITU-R
For more information, please see
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