‘EU is too late to roll out 5G’
Europe is behind the 5G schedule. In 2016, the European Commission directed each member state to auction all 5G frequency bands before 2021. The vast majority, including the Netherlands, did not meet the deadline.
Ookla, a network analyst and developer of speedtest.net, has investigated the status of 5G in thirty European member countries. Almost every member state is falling behind on the 5G Action Plan, which is the European Commission’s plan. The planning enables 5G coverage of the entire European Union by 2030. The condition is that member states stick to the schedule. Only five of the 30 member states surveyed are on track.
The high, low and medium frequency bands were supposed to be auctioned a year ago. Only Germany, Greece, Finland, Croatia and Slovenia met the deadline. The rest are still missing from one or two frames. Some member states, including Belgium, have not auctioned any tires.
Providers can only publish their networks after splitting the frequency bands. The Belgian auction, one of the five countries with the highest backlog, will be held in June. Until then, Belgian service providers are investing in temporary measures to provide 5G. Not every investment contributes to the permanent network, which delays the final offering.
The fastest networks
Despite the economic slowdown, Europe is doing well on the world stage. Swiss providers cover approximately 35 percent of the population with temporary frequency bands. Switzerland scores higher than Japan, China and Saudi Arabia. Covering nearly 50 percent, the Netherlands is the second best grade in the world. The United States ranks first.
5G networks in Saudi Arabia and South Korea are by far the fastest (500Mbps download). Bulgaria is the best in Europe with a speed of 400 Mbps. Most other member countries, including Switzerland and the Netherlands, have to make do with less than 200 Mbps.
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