5G industry news

5G small cells – a step closer?

  • 1 minute read
  • Published by Crispin Moller on 7 Jul 2020
  • Last modified 28 Jul 2020
Andrew Conway Director of Engineering, BAI UK

Headlines about 5G are never very far away and, behind the hype, several organisations are steadily working on making the deployment of this new technology much easier.

Last week’s announcement from the European Commission about adopting Implementing Regulation to pave the way for high capacity 5G network infrastructure made interesting reading. The thrust of the regulation is to remove further barriers to the rollout of small cells. If the solution is below a certain volume in size and meets the relevant power standards, the proposal is to fast-track the current planning processes.

Fast forward UK
Small cells in the UK are frequently classed by local councils as ‘de-minimis’, meaning that extended planning procedures can be avoided or at least fast-tracked. However, each local authority has different views on de-minimis requirements – some authorities being very pro-pole solutions, others favouring street cabinets. The European Union directive is generic, but its ambition is in the right direction.

Further work is required in the UK, as there are layers of stakeholders involved, but this initiative should be considered as another ‘barrier buster’.

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