A Chinese official said Tuesday that 2018 is a pivotal year for setting standards on 5G technology, and research and development of related commercial products.
China will simultaneously press ahead with multiple tasks focused on "standards, research and development, and tests" this year, Zhang Feng, chief engineer of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), said at a press conference.
Zhang said China has entered the third phase of its 5G development which began around two years ago.
"We aim to basically bring 5G system equipment to pre-commercialization, which will lay a sound foundation for large-scale tests and tests of mobile phones," Zhang said.
China is briskly pushing forward 5G technology, with government support and huge investment from tech giants. The world's largest 5G test field with about 30 telecom base stations was established in Beijing's Huairou District.
"We encourage foreign businesses to participate in 5G research and development and tests...and we have seen participation of international manufacturers including Ericsson and Nokia Shanghai Bell," Zhang said.
China promotes open, inclusive, cooperative, and win-win international cooperation to facilitate better 5G development, Zhang added.
China is expected to be the world's largest 5G market by 2025, according to a joint report by GSMA Intelligence, a global mobile think tank, and the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology.