Mobile Experts ( has released a new case study on 5G Ultra-Broadband that explores the future return on investment (ROI) for Fixed-Broadband 5G Networks. The study calculates the potential ROI for a mobile operator to invest in a 28GHz pre-5G network by comparing to LTE costs and potential costs for a sub-6GHz network using 5G technology.

The 23-page study identifies three main factors that analyze spectrum cost, link distance, and traffic density. At historical prices, 5G won’t be successful. According to Mobile Experts, inexpensive access is absolutely necessary to large spectrum blocks.

“The business case for 5G Fixed Broadband is not a slam-dunk,” commented Principal Analyst Joe Madden. “We expect pre-5G deployment to be a very targeted investment by mobile operators, addressing very specific neighborhoods instead of nationwide deployment.”

Short mm-wave links at 50 meters create a challenge to the business case, because the number of customers served by each radio will be too small. Mobile Experts determines that longer links, roughly 200 meters, will be necessary to reach more people.

“Link distance is a key factor in the pre-5G business case at 28 GHz,” saidMadden.”We’ve conducted some in-depth link budget calculations and compared our results to trial results reported by Samsung, Ericsson, Intel, and others. Based on this deep technical work, we have some concerns about the power, linearity, and heat dissipation in pre-5G infrastructure. The laws of physics will limit these pre-5G networks.”

Mobile Experts concludes that fixed broadband at 28GHz will be a starting point for 5G development, but a combination of low-band and high-band spectrum will be important to reach mobile gigabit performance.