5G Spectrum Sharing

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5G Spectrum Sharing brings new innovation.

Access to shared and unlicensed spectrum will extend 5G in multiple dimensions - such as more capacity, higher spectrum utilization, new deployment scenarios. It will benefit mobile operators with licensed spectrum but also opens the doors to those without licensed spectrum – such as cable operators, enterprise or IoT verticals – to take advantage of the 5G New Radio (5G NR) family of technologies. 5G NR is designed to natively support all spectrum types and, through forward compatibility, has the flexibility to take advantage of new spectrum sharing paradigms. This creates opportunities for new innovation to take spectrum sharing to the next level in 5G.

Spectrum sharing is important for 5G.

Unlocking more spectrum

Shared spectrum can unlock spectrum that is lightly used by incumbents such as used certain locations.

High spectrum utilization

Spectrum sharing has the potential to increase spectrum utilization and user experience.

Increasing allocations

FCC ruling on July 2016 regarding spectrum included a significant portion of shared/unlicensed1.

13.25 GHz licensed:  27.5-28.35 GHz (2x425 MHz) + 37.6-38.6 GHz (5x200 MHz) + 38.6-40 GHz (7x200 MHz)
7.6 GHz shared/unlicensed: 37.0-37.6 GHz (3x200 MHz shared spectrum) + 64-71 GHz (7 GHz unlicensed spectrum)

Spectrum sharing valuable for wide range of deployments.

For mobile operators, 5G spectrum sharing enables operators to opportunistically aggregate more spectrum to dynamically support extreme data-speeds for fiber-like experiences. 5G spectrum sharing will also extend the benefits of 5G NR technologies and ecosystem to entities that do not have access to licensed spectrum, such as cable operators, enterprises or IoT verticals. Using shared/unlicensed spectrum enables enhanced local broadband deployments as well as so called private IoT networks, which can be optimized to specific local services, such as industrial IoT.

More spectrum to aggregate

Enhanced local broadband

Private IoT networks

5G NR will natively support shared spectrum.

Opportunity to further enhance sharing.

Fixed spectrum allocation

Full control, partially loaded

Uncoordinated sharing

Higher peak rate and utilization

Coordinated sharing

Increased spectral efficiency

5G NR spectrum sharing prototype drives innovation.

This 5G NR spectrum sharing testbed will be used to both drive and track 5G NR standardization in the area of spectrum sharing. The initial focus will be on technology development to drive new innovation and then followed by field trials with industry leaders. This testbed adds to our existing 5G NR sub-6 GHz and millimeter wave prototype systems.


5G NR Spectrum Sharing

May 14, 2018


Webinar: What can we do with 5G NR Spectrum Sharing that isn’t possible today?

May 14, 2018


New 3GPP effort on NR in unlicensed spectrum expands 5G to new areas

May 9, 2017


What Innovations Can 5G NR Bring to Shared & Unlicensed Spectrum?

May 14, 2018