Coronavirus has had a massive impact across the world in every industry and 5G is no exception. The virus has caused the timing of finalizing 5G standards to be delayed by three months. 3GPP said the Release 16 Stage 3 freeze is now due in June of 2020. The pushback was made after cancelling Working Group (WG) and Technical Specifications Group (TSG) meetings.
Release 16 ASN.1 and Open API specification freeze will be completed as planned in June of 2020. While a rep from 3GPP said that previous meetings made some progress, but they still had work to do.
It’s no surprise that the virus has affected supply chains’ ability to deliver products, and it’s not clear how the 5G standard finalization delay will impact the rollout of future 5G technology. Major industry events around the world, like the Mobile World Congress put on by GSMA, was cancelled due to the outbreak. GSMA said there would be a “goodwill financial package” for all attendees to receive a full refund. The GSMA said, “As a further gesture of goodwill to support our clients, MWC2021 rates will roll-back to those used in 2019.”
Though it may have been a difficult decision, the GSMA stands behind it saying, “It was the only option at the time, as has been made clear by subsequent events,” the organization said. “It is a recognition that, without attendees, exhibitors and sponsors, there wouldn’t be MWC Barcelona. The GSMA thanks its colleagues in the industry for their continued support. The approach seeks to ensure a long-term relationship with the whole MWC ecosystem for the years to come and has been created to give everyone the best possible opportunity to return for MWC Barcelona 2021.”
Major 5G industry player Ericsson was the first big vendor to pull out of the conference due to health concerns surrounding the coronavirus.
Source: Fierce Wireless