Published in Mobiles

5G requires a lot of power

by on29 July 2019

It will be a battery and base station vampire

The telephone industry is a little concerned that 5G’s orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM), a holdover from 4G, might draw too much power in 5G devices and base stations.

James Kimery, the director of marketing for RF and software-defined radio research at National Instruments said that 5G is expected to require far more base stations to deliver service and connect billions of mobile and IoT devices.

"I don't think the carriers really understood the impact on the mobile phone, and what it's going to do to battery life. 5G is going to come with a price, and that price is battery consumption."

And Kimery notes that these concerns apply beyond 5G handsets. China Mobile has "been vocal about the power consumption of their base stations", he said. A 5G base station is expected to consume three times as much power as a 4G base station. And more 5G base stations are needed to cover the same area.

The power supply issue is not expected to be looked at until the end of the year which means that those early adopters are going to really suffer.


Last modified on 29 July 2019
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