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Alcatel-Lucent exec says 5G talk by other companies is "ridiculous"

The CTO at Alcatel-Lucent is frustrated with the approach to 5G.
September 12, 2014

As we have previously reported, a number of companies are already discussing 5G technology without any idea of what it actually entails. Some are even marketing that they currently offer 5G speeds when they are barely offering what is defined as 4G speeds. Others, such as South Korea’s 3 major mobile operators, plan to introduce commercial 5G technology by 2020-2021.

Michael Peeters, wireless CTO at Alcatel-Lucent, is therefore frustrated with the industry’s approach to 5G technology. Peeters contends the approach being taken is confusing to customers and confusing to the industry themselves. He went as far as to call it “ridiculous.”

In a keynote address at the Towers & Small Cell Summit, part of CTIA’s Super Mobility Week, Peeters said companies are throwing into 5G pretty much everything that was not included in earlier technology evolutions, with examples including massive MIMO, machine-to-machine (M2M) and millimeter-wave technologies. Further, he noted some companies are arguing that intellectual property and assets that they possess should be considered 5G components even though 5G has not even been defined. – FierceWireless

According to Peeters, companies should come to the realization that:

  • 5G technology will not be about more capacity or bandwidth.
  • 5G next-generation network architecture must be open and transparent.
  • 5G technology will not be deployed until companies prepare themselves for “4.5G” which involves deploying small cells so that costs can go down in congested areas.
  • Any significant upgrade (such as actual 5G technology) will not truly be ready until at the least 2022-2023.
  • Carriers need to enable the use of LTE in unlicensed bands (usually used by Wi-Fi) so that capacity of the network can be increased.