Nokia has become a significant partner in the Canadian wireless service – while they did a five-year deal with Wind Mobile to work together as the exclusive equipment supplier to get them 4GLTE coverage, they are now working with Bell to implement and test the new 5G network. They have completed the first Canadian trial of 5G technology – the trial leveraged spectrum speeds in the 73GHz range to achieve sustained data speeds that are 6-times faster than the 4G speeds are now available in Canada.
From the FCC and Tom Wheeler in the US to Canada’s government, 5G is being pushed, and pushed hard. Even with all of this strategy going on, it will be doubtful that we will see 5G before 4 or 5 years. We are talking about all new equipment – expensive equipment – that needs to be distributed around a rough Canadian terrain. Besides the increase in streaming movies, videos, YouTube, and music, the next big thing – the Internet of Things (IoT), not to mention connected vehicles driving around the community, is fueling the desire for faster speeds.
Stephen Howe, Bell's Chief Technology Officer and Executive Vice President said that "Bell is working closely with Nokia and our other partners in North America and worldwide to create the network, device and application ecosystem required to ensure Canadians will be able to take full advantage of the 5G opportunity." Nobody, especially Canada wants to be left out of 5G picture – they expect to be a global leader and hope to attract new businesses to Canada.
The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development explained that Canada’s ability to compete in the new digital work is based on how they focus on innovation. If they can get a successful 5G net going in Canada, they can become a global center of innovation – attracting outsiders to flock to Canada and start new businesses. Bell is the perfect place to start as they lead in R&D communication investments with innovation centers in Dorval, Québec, Mississauga, and Toronto, while at the same time offer the largest 4G coverage to Canadians. With Bell and Nokia working together, there is no reason that Canada will not see 5G within five years - it seems like a long way, but it will take time for 5G smartphones and tablets to arrive as well. They have a plan and are working it.