Brazil’s minister of communications, Juscelino Filho, has signed into law the ConectaBR programme, whose aim is to improve the quality and coverage of mobile broadband.
An initiative developed alongside regulator Anatel, it will meet this aim, according to the ministry, by expanding coverage, improving quality of service, correcting regional inequalities and facilitating access to essential inputs.
The ministry’s announcement says that ConectaBR will identify the points in greatest need of improvement. There will, for example, be initiatives to expand coverage in favelas (shanty towns) and rural areas through agreements with – or requirements from – operators.
There will also be an agreed definition of quality requirements. The ministry cites, as an example, minimum requirements of 100 Mbps download in 5G and 10 Mbps in 4G. Measures to expand coverage will include the use of satellite connectivity and fixed wireless access (FWA). Quality improvement will be enabled via the shutdown of services in legacy technologies (such as 2G and 3G) to be replaced by 4G and 5G.
According to TeleGeography's CommsUpdate, Anatel will stage periodic Mobile Telephony Blitzes, as they will be known, in areas that have reported poor connectivity. A municipality will only be considered ‘covered’ when the ideal download speeds are available to 95% of its urban area.
It’s an ambitious plan – and the ministry has not yet established the goals or the way it plans to achieve these objectives. It will be up to Anatel to flesh them out and to suggest the necessary regulatory measures to make the programme viable.