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  • Foto del escritorRamiro Parias

5G: Myths and ad porta benefits of its implementation in Colombia

In Colombia, the Ministry of Information and Communication Technologies adopted in 2019 the public policy that contains the actions required for the implementation of 5G in the country. Among the actions carried out are the regulatory modifications to facilitate access to spectrum for technical tests, the transition plan to new technologies, the review of the regulatory conditions for the entry of 5G, and the development of 50 5G pilots that They have been approved to date for six companies in eight cities. In June of this year, the ICT Ministry launched a public consultation on the advances in the development of 5G in Colombia, posing a questionnaire of 16 questions from which the Ministry seeks to know what perception the sector, the academy and the citizenry have in terms of of the imminent development of 5G.

In general terms, 5G is the 5th generation of mobile networks, designed to deal with the increase in data flow and the need for connectivity in society. These networks allow to significantly increase the amount of data transmitted through wireless systems thanks to greater bandwidth and advanced antenna technology. The most significant advance of 5G networks is their speed, which allows instant connectivity with millions of devices and the possibility of sharing information between them.

“As often happens with new technologies, their ignorance usually leads to the appearance of fears and myths around them. In the case of 5G, among the most recurrent myths are the health risks that have been attributed to its signals. These include that 5G causes cancer, that it helps transmit the Coronavirus by weakening our immune system, that it produces DNA alterations, among others. However, these myths usually arise from beliefs about the radiation emitted by the antennas, since there is no complete scientific evidence that they cause negative health effects.” affirmed Lorenzo Villegas-Carrasquilla, Partner of the firm CMS Rodríguez-Azuero.

Other myths are related to security issues and attribute privacy risks to 5G that facilitate espionage. Although it is true that 5G opens the door to new cyber attacks, this happens with any new technology and is not a feature of 5G, which translates into new security challenges for companies.

On the other hand, we must take into account the benefits that the implementation of 5G will bring. The main benefit for users will be the increase in speed, it is estimated that 5G will allow browsing up to 10 times faster than some fiber optic offers on the market. This means, for example, that a complete movie could be downloaded in a matter of seconds thanks to the speed of the networks. Similarly, this increase in speed will allow the integration of connectivity with the productive processes of the economy, becoming a production tool with a significantly high value generation potential. This will allow the development and improvement of emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and cloud services, among others.

Another advantage of 5G networks is lower latency. This refers to the ability of the network to respond to user requests since, the lower the latency, the greater the network's ability to send information quickly from one point to another. In the same way, 5G networks will guarantee better connectivity for a greater number of devices in one place, since it is estimated that there would be one million devices connected per square kilometer compared to ten thousand devices with 4G, which will allow better signal in crowds.

“The future of 5G in Colombia has enormous potential, as this technology would increase the competitiveness and productivity of the regions, in addition to generating more employment. For the development of this technology in Colombia, it is expected that there will be a more agile deployment of the infrastructure, hand in hand with a management and planning of the radioelectric spectrum that should be facilitated by a legal framework that encourages and facilitates investment. In the same way, these advances will lead to a regulation oriented towards the security and privacy of services and applications, focused on the quality of services and the rights of users”, concluded Lorenzo Villegas-Carrasquilla.

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