To say that we are living in a time of change is by and large one of the most misused phrases there is. The truth is that the times are always changing, with new technologies, products and services waiting around every corner.
The phrase also implies that we need to think twice about every step we take, as we’re supposedly facing a never before seen shift. In reality, it is much more efficient to simply recognise that the change has already taken place and that all we can do is to do our best to make sure that the legislation we pass is up-to-date or dynamic enough to adapt to market changes.
Creating favourable conditions for fast-developing digital services
The decision by the European Parliament to allocate the 700 MHz frequency band to mobile communications is a good example of legislation seeking to meet the demands of a vibrant market. Digital services are developing fast, and in order to create the most favourable conditions for them to flourish, and for Europe to be able to keep pace with South Korea, the United States and Japan, spectrum coordination and harmonisation is simply necessary.
Thanks to today’s decision, the 700 MHz band will provide the base for making 5G available throughout the Union. The decision also constitutes a successful example of spectrum coordination among Member States, which is what the new Electronic Communications Code, soon to be negotiated in the European Parliament, aims to achieve. By recognising that the technological development is already taking place and that we need to keep up in order to stay competitive, decisions like these come naturally.
Europe is by no means first to reach this decision. Still, we have come a long way by making sure that the market is able to reap the full benefits of 5G. Because even if we are weary of saying that we’re living in a time of change, today we certainly are. 5G will fundamentally transform societal services, industry, business models and our everyday lives. It will be nothing short of a digital revolution. Today’s decision means Europe is now better equipped to keeping up with the pace.