16th December: Newsletter in brief
Ever since UK5G began in 2018 maintaining an international outlook has been critical component of what we do. Mobile communications is a global business, and so an ideal focal point to enable UK export and inward investment. 2020 started with several physical visits from overseas missions and delegations from the UK visiting countries such as Sweden and the Baltic States to exchange views on opportunities. Whilst there is no denying that COVID-19 stopped such visits this year, there have still been positive developments such as the signing of an MoU with the 5G-ACIA. While many members of the UK5G Advisory Board have raised the profile of UK capabilities on the global stage by taking part in numerous virtual international conferences.
The UK’s supplier diversification initiative injects further energy into these International activities. Whilst many will hope for the development of a stronger home-grown supplier capability, this will take some time. However, if the UK plays its cards right in attracting global players and supply chains, and effectively harnesses the resulting diversity, this will be the catalyst for significant developments. Developments not only impacting current telco business models, but also for industry sectors that may wish to harness private mobile network solutions
The UK5G International Working Group meets to discuss trends in the industry and make recommendations to DCMS and the UK5G team. This year we have noted the emergence of new 5G oriented collaborative organisations that seek to influence and encourage adoption of standards in the sectors of Media and Health. This shows that 5G continues its march into sectors beyond Telco, for example Transport (5G-AA) and Industrial networks (5G-ACIA). We have already started to process the Beyond 5G messaging (some already claim 6G) that is emerging from various centres of competence on the Global stage. Whether there will be a 6G or not, one thing we know for sure is communications technology continues to evolve as will the services and applications – 5G has a long way to go until maturity.
As the CTO of Real Wireless, (a UK based SME focussed on Consulting and Advisory services) I’m happy to reflect on our year and see that, even with my international travel severely curtailed, we have continued our international reach. Working with clients in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and advising on strategies looking well beyond home markets. Whilst I might be sick of the sight of my home office this year, I think we can all acknowledge that global communications has certainly kept the world ticking over to a remarkable extent. With the final tranche of 5G Create projects getting underway, planning for virtual missions and big-ticket events like MWC already well underway, and the hope of vaccine reduced COVID-19 impact I look forward to a good 2021. I wish everyone a peaceful, safe and relaxed Christmas and New Year’s break
CTO, Real Wireless Ltd
UK5G International Working Group