A European commissioner raised concerns in a private letter to mobile operators and the network infrastructure industry – seen by The Register – that the 5G project is not working out according to plan.
Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said in the letter – sent early in December last year – to the major industry body behind the 5G standard, 3GPP, that she is concerned with its progress on "vertical industries" like smart cities, eHealth and connected transport.
Commissioner Gabriel addressed 3GPP's Project Coordination Group chair, Jorge Luis Romero, saying she was concerned that the group – which is made up of all of the biggest names in the mobile industry – is focusing too much on faster mobile and not enough on the original 5G vision of an all-singing, all-dancing hyper-connected world.
She went on to politely bring up the small matter of the €700m the commission has pledged to its 5G Public Private Partnership (5GPPP), which was designed to hothouse a range of projects loosely brought under the banner of 5G.
These projects have seen around 300 contributions into the standard as it is today, said Gabriel in the letter.
He said he "begged to differ with [Gabriel's] view that 3GPP is focused primarily on improving data-rate capabilities" and that 3GPP is committed to meeting and in many cases exceeding the minimum performance requirements set by the International Telecommunications Union, which will rubberstamp the globally binding 5G standard in 2019.