South Korea to spend £290 million on 5G land grab

Sod the standards, Seoul wants a working network by 2018


South Korea has become the latest Asian nation to pledge its future to fifth-generation wireless networks, aka 5G, with Seoul set to stump up 500 billion won (£292m) to build a super-ultra-mega-fast network by 2020.

Keen to maintain the country’s position at the apex of the most technologically advanced nations on Earth, the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning claimed that a “5G network” would be ready for testing by 2018 and full commercial roll-out in 2020, according to Yonhap.

Said network will apparently offer speeds 1,000 faster than current LTE technology, boosting the South Korean economy and helping the nation grab 20 per cent of the global mobile communications equipment market by 2020, it added.

There are, of course, not insignificant barriers to this lofty aim.

Samsung earlier this year made headlines around the world after claiming to have made a “5G breakthrough” by sending a signal two kilometres through the air over the 28Ghz radio band.

As pointed out by your hard-working El Reg hacks at the time, however, the radio technology demoed by the South Korean giant was “only one piece of a phone network jigsaw”.

In short, there is no such thing at the moment as 5G – no unified standards body, no agreement on specs, roadmaps or the rest. In fact, The Reg has even gone further to argue there will almost certainly never be a 5G mobile broadband network.

That said, a number of countries and companies are researching technologies which could form the basis of whatever comes after LTE-Advanced.

Among these are Japanese giant NTT Docomo, which wants to have some kind of network up and running by the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, and Huawei, which last month announced it was pumping $600m into research over the next five years.

On a smaller scale, Surrey University is using £11.6m in UK government cash and £24m from the industry to fund a 5G Innovation Centre. ®


Other stories you might like

  • Robotics and 5G to spur growth of SoC industry – report
    Big OEMs hogging production and COVID causing supply issues

    The system-on-chip (SoC) side of the semiconductor industry is poised for growth between now and 2026, when it's predicted to be worth $6.85 billion, according to an analyst's report. 

    Chances are good that there's an SoC-powered device within arm's reach of you: the tiny integrated circuits contain everything needed for a basic computer, leading to their proliferation in mobile, IoT and smart devices. 

    The report predicting the growth comes from advisory biz Technavio, which looked at a long list of companies in the SoC market. Vendors it analyzed include Apple, Broadcom, Intel, Nvidia, TSMC, Toshiba, and more. The company predicts that much of the growth between now and 2026 will stem primarily from robotics and 5G. 

    Continue reading
  • Deepfake attacks can easily trick live facial recognition systems online
    Plus: Next PyTorch release will support Apple GPUs so devs can train neural networks on their own laptops

    In brief Miscreants can easily steal someone else's identity by tricking live facial recognition software using deepfakes, according to a new report.

    Sensity AI, a startup focused on tackling identity fraud, carried out a series of pretend attacks. Engineers scanned the image of someone from an ID card, and mapped their likeness onto another person's face. Sensity then tested whether they could breach live facial recognition systems by tricking them into believing the pretend attacker is a real user.

    So-called "liveness tests" try to authenticate identities in real-time, relying on images or video streams from cameras like face recognition used to unlock mobile phones, for example. Nine out of ten vendors failed Sensity's live deepfake attacks.

    Continue reading
  • Lonestar plans to put datacenters in the Moon's lava tubes
    How? Founder tells The Register 'Robots… lots of robots'

    Imagine a future where racks of computer servers hum quietly in darkness below the surface of the Moon.

    Here is where some of the most important data is stored, to be left untouched for as long as can be. The idea sounds like something from science-fiction, but one startup that recently emerged from stealth is trying to turn it into a reality. Lonestar Data Holdings has a unique mission unlike any other cloud provider: to build datacenters on the Moon backing up the world's data.

    "It's inconceivable to me that we are keeping our most precious assets, our knowledge and our data, on Earth, where we're setting off bombs and burning things," Christopher Stott, founder and CEO of Lonestar, told The Register. "We need to put our assets in place off our planet, where we can keep it safe."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022