New head of Verizon Wireless Ronan Dunne this week warned regulators in the United Kingdom against an “analogue” approach to 5G technologies, saying such a strategy would lead the country to lose the race to next generation wireless technologies.
Speaking to the Financial Times, Dunne said the United Kingdom could fall behind other countries in the rush to 5G if it doesn’t update its “old industrial policy” to regulate infrastructure upgrades.
Dunne, who recently made the move to Verizon after nearly a decade at the helm of U.K. wireless provider O2, said forward-thinking policies like those adopted in the United States could give other countries an advantage.
In the United States in particular, Dunne said “there’s a more forward looking context for the delivery of regulation and policy,” and noted the country is “adopting the notion of a digitally-led mobile first” approach.
Dunne’s comments come on the heels of the European Commission’s (EC) release of a series of ten-year Internet connectivity goals that include a target to deliver widespread 5G coverage by 2025.
The EC said 5G deployments will be driven by its new 5G Action Plan, which includes a schedule for coordinated commercial 5G launches in 2020. The plan includes objectives for EU member states and industry players to open up more spectrum for 5G, organize and conduct pan-European 5G trials by 2018 and promote common global 5G standards, but does not delve into country specific regulations surrounding infrastructure improvements.