Q4/2019 - International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
World Radiocommunication Conference, Sharm el Sheikh, 28 October – 22 November 2019
The ITU World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC 19) was held in Sharm el Sheikh from 28 October to 22 November 2019. It was attended by 3600 experts from 165 countries. The conference took a large number of decisions in the technical field the impact of which will extend well into the 2020s and 2030s. The most essential ones include definitions of additional frequency bands for 5G services (IMT-2020) and technical measures to improve mobile communications between satellites and transport systems (aircraft, ships, railways, cars) as well as on smart cities, health care and climate.
ITU Report Measuring Digital Development, Geneva, 5 November 2019
On 5 November 2019, the ITU published its annual report “Measuring the Digital Development: Facts and Figures 2019”. The report documents substantial progress with regard to access to the Internet and mobile communications, but also outlines the deficits that still exist. Meanwhile, 97 percent of the world population live within the immediate reach of a mobile network. The number of Internet users has increased to 4.1 billion. On the other hand, there are still 3.6 billion people who do not have access to the Internet. According to the report, in the least developed countries only two in ten citizens use the Internet. High costs and lack of knowledge are the main barriers that impede the access. The ITU also notes a trend away from the computer to the smartphone; in a growing number of households the smartphone has become the most important device for accessing the Internet.