5G introduction in Germany

A commentary on the expansion of the German mobile communications network

The media landscape in Germany may cause frowns: mobile communications overall was a tragedy; there were too many dead spots as well in the countryside as in the railway system, the stability would be inadequate; and of course the prices were too high when compared with other countries. As clear as it may be that there is room for improvement in the mobile network as a whole – especially when it comes to network availability – in order to deal with this situation constructively, it is necessary to carry out a factual analysis so that this basic prerequisite for economic success can be met.

In order for the further expansion of the mobile communication network to take place, more and more transmission masts must be installed,including ones near residential areas. According to estimates, up to 90,000 additional base stations will be required to improve network availability in the coming years. In general, these antenna-dotted sites are not particularly aesthetically pleasing. For this reason, many communities try to block the construction of transmission masts through citizens´initiatives, citing design issues. And many residents are concerned about health risks. However, according to the Federal Pollution Control Act, the sites are not even subject to approval so long as the specified limit values are maintained.

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