3G Americas today published a new white paper entitled "Defining 4G: Understanding the ITU Process for the Next Generation of Wireless Technology." The white paper provides the factual description of how IMT-Advanced or 4G will someday be defined by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). ITU is the internationally recognized authority that will produce the official definition of the next generation of wireless technologies beyond IMT-2000 or 3G.
Chris Pearson, President of 3G Americas, stated, "The ITU is currently establishing criteria for IMT-Advanced and will be screening various technologies for inclusion in the IMT-Advanced family. Only then will we understand what is and can be rightly and credibly called 4G." He continued, "Any claim today that a particular technology is a so-called '4G technology,' in reality, is simply a marketing spin, creating market confusion and deflating the importance of the telecommunications industry standards. Technologies should be verified against a set of agreed-upon requirements in order to qualify as 4G, and this will happen in the future when the requirements are outlined by the ITU."
Significant progress has been made by the Radiocommunication Sector of the ITU (ITU-R) in establishing an agreed and globally accepted definition of 4G wireless systems, and ITU-R is close to releasing a full set of documentation for this definition. Working under a mandate to address systems beyond 3G, ITU-R has progressed from delivering a vision of 4G in 2002 to establishing a name for 4G in 2005 (IMT-Advanced). In 2006, ITU-R set out the principles for the process of the development of IMT-Advanced. The work of the ITU encompasses the important elements of business success in the wireless industry, especially the balance of a market and services view, a technology view, a spectrum view and regulatory aspects. In early 2008, ITU-R will translate the vision into a set of requirements by which technologies and systems can, in the near future, be determined a part of IMT-Advanced and in doing so, earn the credible right to be considered 4G.
During 2008 and 2009, ITU-R will hold an open call for 4G (IMT-Advanced) candidates as well as an assessment of those candidates' technologies and systems. The culmination of this open process will be a 4G, or IMT-Advanced family of technologies. Such a 4G family of technologies, in adherence to the principles defined for acceptance into this ITU process, is globally recognized to be one which can grow to include all aspects of a marketplace that will arrive beyond 2010.
"Third generation technologies are growing immensely in the marketplace, but they too once started out with a vision and requirements from ITU," stated Pearson. "The evolving wireless marketplace and its customers will be well served by the current ITU process for the next generation of wireless services."
The white paper, "Defining 4G: Understanding the ITU Process for the Next Generation of Wireless Technology," is available for free download at www.3gamericas.org.