At present, there is still no agreed standard for fifth generation cellular network standards – also known as 5G. However, despite this handicap it appears that the world is preparing itself for the next generation of mobile networking technologies. Just recently, the American FCC, Federal Communications Commission, released 11 GHz of spectrum for fifth generation networks. Carriers both in the United States of America and elsewhere are planning on launching trial 5G networks as early as next year. So many businesses are investing substantial amount of time and money into the next generation network because it is seen as a potentially huge driver of economic prosperity. 5G networking is expected to form the backbone of modern civilization, handling everything from the Internet-of-Things (billions of interconnected devices designed to make modern life easier) to commercial monetary transactions to the Internet as a whole.
Samsung has announced it is acting as a member of the board of directors of the Advanced Wireless Research Initiative, or AWRI, an American group established by the White House with a remit to develop next-generation networking and communications standards and technologies. Of course, this includes the 5G mobile networks, the Internet of Things, and expansion of the current HSPA and LTE technologies. The AWRI includes companies such as the four national carriers (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile US and Verizon Wireless), networking businesses (such as Nokia), component manufacturers (including Qualcomm and Intel) and software vendors (such as Oracle). This group is in charge of a division of some 400 engineers and researchers based in America.
Samsung is well equipped to join the AWRI, having developed their own networking technology test beds and of course being the world's largest smartphone manufacturer and owning a massive portfolio of devices. Even the President of the United States of America is believed to use a Samsung. Although the core business has struggled to maintain or grow market share, Samsung also has deep pockets, which is important as this research and development needs to be paid for. However, with governments and businesses placing much importance on 5G technologies, it appears that this is an investment Samsung cannot afford to miss. We understand that Samsung's efforts will be concentrated on leading the AWRI's research into ultra-high frequency networking, that is, frequencies of at least 28 GHz. These ultra-high frequencies should help 5G technologies achieve the very high transfer rates, as the higher the frequency the greater the potential transfer rates but also the shorter the range of the signal as high-frequency waves are easily blocked by buildings and other obstacles.