Singapore’s IMDA wants proper standalone 5G, not upgrades

ITEM: Remember that 5G public consultation paper that the Infocomm Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA) released last week? One nifty detail that was a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it footnote in the press release is that it calls on operators to concentrate on standalone 5G deployments rather than simply upgrade their existing 4G networks to 5G. The IMDA proposes to require spectrum winners to deploy SA 5G networks with more than 50% coverage within 24 months after they receive 3.5 GHz spectrum. But the IMDA also prefers that the new spectrum to be used for standalone (SA) 5G deployments, as opposed to non-standalone (NSA) 5G, which is the current 3GPP standard being deployed. In any case, the IMDA does seem to see 5G as a multi-vendor play.

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