Experts Say Annual Power Consumption of 5G Networks Will Cost 216 Billion RMB in China

Updated:2019/12/3 23:54

Power consumption is a major problem confronting the development of 5G networks in China, according to Yang Fengyi, the Deputy Director of China Telecom Technology Innovation Center.

Yang indicated that typical power consumption of 4G base stations is 1,300 watts per month, while typical power consumption of 5G base stations is about 3,500 watts per month. To ensure the same coverage, the number of 5G base stations will be 3-4 times that of 4G base stations, resulting in a substantial growth in overall energy consumption by more than 9 times.

According to statistics, the base stations of the three operators in China used approximately 27 billion kWh of electricity in 2018, and the total electricity cost was about 24 billion yuan. Yang stated that to ensure the same coverage as 4G networks, the energy consumption of 5G networks will reach 243 billion kWh and cost 216 billion yuan. Yang also said frankly that such a huge cost of electricity will eat up all the profits of the three operators and cause additional loss amounting to tens of billions of yuan. Besides, even if the number of 5G base stations is less than 3-4 times that of 4G base stations, the rise of operating costs should not be underestimated.

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