16 March 2017

The 5G trial process starts today  in Italy. It will affect 5 Italian cities: the metropolitan area of Milan, Prato, L’Aquila, Bari and Matera. With the publication, on the website of the Ministry of Economic Development, of the related public notice, the journey to provide Italy with the technology for fifth generation mobile networks, begins.  The 5G is not just an evolution of 4G, it is a platform that opens up new opportunities for development. It is an enabling technology for innovative services that will profoundly change, for example, the lifestyle of citizens and the businesses. It represents a strong technology in discontinuity with the past in terms, among others, of speed, latency time and number of things/people connected; it has an enormous potential in terms of services that will be developed and will represent a key driver for our production system.

In its Action Plan for the 5G, the European Commission called on Member States to identify by 2018 at least a city where start testing of 5G. “We want to be in the leading group. Italy accepts the European challenge and indeed goes further – says the Undersecretary for Economic Development Antonello Giacomelli – in these 5 Italian cities we provide the frequencies and ask the interested operators and to those who want to bet on the future, as we do, to present their projects. The public sector is fully doing its part and we ask the protagonists of the market to contribute creating business and opportunities that concur to the growth of Italy “. The public notice does not have the sole purpose of experiencing the 5G network from an infrastructure point of view, it is, infact, required to present projects that will be evaluated both in terms of infrastructures and services that will be tested. The call is therefore not addressed only to telecom operators but also to other subjects, on national and international level that want to experience services through 5G technology, to universities, to institutions and research centers and encourage the involvement of local SMEs, startups and public entities.

“We want that the identified areas will become places for the testing of innovative services. The infrastructure is the enabling condition, but the real challenge is to candidate Italy to be a reference point for the creation of products and services that take advantage of the 5G technology – continued the Undersecretary Giacomelli – This, and the work on the parallel ultra broadband plan, which will allow the presence of the optical fiber on all the territories, will put us in the position to replicate across the country everything we will experience at this stage, because we believe that the digital challenge will be won only if all the citizens and businesses will benefit from the network and innovative services. ”

The tender lots are three: the first concerns the territory of the city of Milan, the second will include the city of Prato and L’Aquila, the third Bari and Matera.

The cities has been selected through the following criteria: geographic distribution, capillary action of ultra-fast connectivity, availability of frequencies in the band from 3.7 to 3.8 GHz, proximity the European corridors. In addition to the cities choose following these criteria, we identified also  L’Aquila and Matera: the first because of its post-earthquake reconstruction phase, the second thanks to the prevision to be the next European Capital of Culture in 2019.

Applications may be submitted by May 15; the projects will be selected  by July 14. The projects selected will start by the end of the year. The trial will last until 2020.