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  • FAQ

    My operator has been granted a derogation regarding roaming. What does that mean?

    Operators have the right to submit an application to BIPT to receive a derogation allowing them to apply roaming surcharges in the European Union (and associated countries: Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein).

    Currently no Belgian operator has been granted such a derogation.

    Surcharges applied pursuant to such a derogation may not exceed the following amounts: 

    What you do How much you pay
    (VAT included)
    You call Maximum 3.8 eurocents per call minute on top of the domestic tariff
    You receive a call Maximum 0.94 eurocent per call minute
    You send an SMS Maximum 1.2 eurocent per SMS on top of the domestic tariff
    You receive an SMS No surcharge possible
    You surf the Internet Maximum 0.34 eurocent per megabyte on top of the domestic tariff

  • FAQ

    All you need to know about 5G

    The Regions’ general brief aiming to regulate the protection of the environment also entails the power to adopt measures to prevent and minimise the risks related to the non-ionising radiation. It is therefore the Regions that define the radiation standards (standards for maximum emission) the operators have to comply with. The mobile operators are required to comply with these radiation standards, regardless of the technology they use. 

    The Regions also carry out inspections in the field to verify whether the radiation standards set by them are complied with. 

    For more information or to request radiation measurements, we invite you to contact your regional administration in charge:

    • Brussels Capital Region
      Brussels Environment
      Tel. 02 775 75 75
       
    • Flanders
      Environmental Department of the Flemish Government
      Tel. 02 553 83 50
       
    • Wallonia
      Institut scientifique de service public
      Tel. 04 229 82 35 (info-ISSEP) 

  • FAQ

    Most manufacturers commercialise 5G compatible telephones but the majority of the Belgian users does not have such a device. In general, a new device will have to be purchased in order to be able to use 5G.

    All you need to know about 5G

  • FAQ

    All you need to know about 5G

    At the request of the Brussels Region, the BIPT carried out a study in September 2018 already, to determine which radiation standards would be necessary to roll out mobile 5G networks (5G). The technical report regarding the impact of the current Brussels radiation standards on the roll-out of mobile networks concluded that, taking into account the expected increase in data traffic and a desired roll-out of 5G, the radiation standards needed to be adjusted. The report was about 5G roll-out, but it also warned that 4G networks too risked congestion in the long run. That was confirmed by the study of 8 March 2021, in which the BIPT predicts the risks of congestion of the 4G networks in 3 major cities:

    • The study predicts that the 4G networks in Antwerp do not risk a considerable congestion.
    • In Liège the risk of a partial congestion during peak hours is expected for 4G networks. 
    • For Brussels the study warns against a risk of a major congestion during peak hours for 4G networks.

  • FAQ

    One of the next steps to truly introduce 5G in Belgium, is the auction of the 5G licences.

    However, the public will not be able to use 5G immediately after the auction either. The roll-out of 5G networks requires private companies to invest in network infrastructure. Consequently, the introduction of 5G in Belgium is not only defined by the availability of spectrum but by the willingness of providers to invest in 5G as well.

  • FAQ

    All you need to know about 5G

    5G further increases the mobile networks’ capacity for these to be able to continue to digest the still rapidly increasing mobile data traffic. For instance, a tenfold increase has been reported for data traffic in the past 5 years.

    In addition, 5G supports the Internet of Things and new applications, for instance for the automotive industry, health care and media and entertainment.

    5G aims at continuing to improve the mobile networks’ possibilities. Three spearheads can be distinguished in this regard:

    • an increase of the data speed per user and an increase of the mobile networks’ capacity in order to be able to manage the future growth of the mobile traffic. This will result in a better user experience and allow applications requiring more speed, e.g. Ultra-High Definition Video, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality …;
    • an improved reliability and latency. This allows to develop innovative services, the latency of which is crucial, for instance autonomous driving;
    • an increase of the number of devices that can be connected in a given area. This boosts the growth of the Internet of Things, which allows a more efficient management and follow-up not only in various sectors but in your home environment as well (Smart Homes, Smart Ports, Smart Agriculture ...).

  • FAQ

    In December 2020, Proximus activated 5G in the spectrum for which temporary user rights had been obtained at a number of sites.

    In addition, for its 5G Light product, launched in April 2020, Proximus uses the frequency bands that had already been assigned to it in the past based on its 3G licence, i.e. the 2100 MHz band. In accordance with the principle of technological neutrality (imposed by the European Directives), the operators having obtained user rights in a given frequency band are free to choose which technology they use. In that regard, Proximus’s démarche was completely legal. The accompanying tariff plan was baptised Mobilus 5G Unlimited and was offered at 49.99 EUR/month. It allows a download speed that is up to 30% higher than with 4G.
    Proximus has to continue to comply with the current radiation standards for its 5G Light product as well.

    Telenet will be gradually launching its mobile 5G network as of December 2021.

    The first 5G zones are located around Leuven, Antwerp and the coast. Customers with a 5G smartphone and a ONE, ONEup, KLIK and KING or KONG Business subscription will be the first to experience the benefits of this new technology. The other mobile products of Telenet, Telenet Business and BASE will follow in the spring of 2022. The 5G network will then be developed in the following years.

    Currently 5G test licences are also deployed for 5G testing.

    All you need to know about 5G

  • FAQ

    5G is introduced in Belgium in keeping with the European guidelines. With the 5G Action Plan for Europe the European Commission suggested a coordinated roll-out of 5G as early as 2016. The European Union designated three preferential frequency bands for the 5G technology: 700 MHz, 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz. The European Electronic Communications Code, approved by the European Parliament and the Council (in which also Belgium is represented by the competent minister) and which had to be transposed into Belgian law by 21 December 2020, imposed a specific schedule on the Member States for the introduction of 5G in these frequency bands.
    This schedule is binding. By the end of June 2020 the deadline for making the 700 MHz band available expired, the period of validity of the user rights for the other pioneer bands had to end by 31 December 2020 at the latest.

    The introduction in Belgium was the result of a long democratic process. This was initiated by the BIPT with the publication of its communication of 10 September 2018 regarding the introduction of 5G in Belgium. Next, the BIPT published different public consultations on the legislative texts. In July 2018 the then federal Council of Ministers adopted the draft texts organising the 3400-3800 MHz band auction for the first time. Prior to proceeding to an auction, the Consultation Committee, the body for the alignment of the different Belgian governments’ policies, has to come to an agreement regarding this.

    At the same time as the deliberations in the Consultation Committee, the federal Parliament was informed as well. On 11 December 2019 a hearing regarding the 5G roll-out took place and a topical debate on 5 February.

    In the absence of a political agreement and with the European deadline for the introduction of 5G in sight, the BIPT initiated a procedure for the granting of temporary user rights in a part of the 3600 MHz band for the provision of 5G. Early 2020, the BIPT launched a call for candidates. The draft decision for the granting of the temporary licences to the candidate operators (Cegeka, Entropia Investments BVBA, Orange Belgium, Proximus and Telenet Group), including the terms and conditions for use, such as the technical requirements, the fees due, the validity of the licence ... was published for public consultation on 23 March 2020. 

    On 22 January 2021, the federal Council of Ministers reviewed the 5G case and ratified a bill and a number of Royal Decrees enabling the auction of 5G rights in our country following the approval of, among others, the Consultation Committee. 

    On 26 May 2021 the Consultation Committee already approved the bill, which was adopted in the Chamber’s plenary assembly on 17 June and was published in the Belgian Official Gazette on 6 July 2021.

    Following this, a public consultation was held from 16 July until 31 August 2021 on the Royal Decrees further implementing the multiband auction during which 5G user rights shall be put up for auction as well.

    On November 24, 2021, the consultation committee gave its final approval regarding the royal decrees for the auction of 5G spectrum. After the publication of the royal decrees on 23 December 2021, BIPT has started with the preparations for the auction. This is planned for the second quarter of 2022.

    All you need to know about 5G

  • FAQ

    You must register via a GMDSS examination centre. 

    The practical exam takes place on the equipment used by the candidate during his or her training. 

    There is a €73.39 registration fee, which is non-refundable. 

    In case of an annulment more than one week before the exam or upon presentation of a medical certificate, the registration fee can be moved to another date. 

    To pass, one must obtain 50% of the points for each subject and 60% in total. No exoneration will be granted for the practical part. 

    In case of a re-examination, an exemption is only granted for the theoretical parts for which the candidate obtained 70% or more and if the candidate does so within one year after the original examination. 

    In the event of a re-examination, the practical part must always be redone.
     

  • FAQ

    A wireless local area network allows you to interconnect your devices and radio waves enable the rapid exchange of data.

    The term “Wi-Fi” was coined to get a simpler term to refer to the standards of the group IEEE 802.11, which are the ones used for wireless networks. Since 1999, several versions have followed one another, improving the quality of data transmitted per second, the signal range or the connection quality. The latest publicly accessible version is called Wi-Fi 6 (the official name of the standard is “IEEE 802.11ax”).

    Several devices are already compatible with Wi-Fi 6 or Wi-Fi 6E; these are very recent. Concerning your modem/router, there will be some time before this technology is included. At present, the Wi-Fi signal transmitted by your modem/router uses two frequency bands (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz):

    • 2.4 GHz: This frequency band, shared by numerous types of use, enables the transmission of signals over long distances and is not affected by barriers created by walls or floors;
    • 5 GHz: This frequency band is more stable and faster. Regarding data transmission, it has more and broader channels: there are 13 channels of 20 MHz or 40 MHz on 2.4 GHz. On 5 GHz, there are 13 channels of 20, 40 and 80 MHz. Most receivers are compatible with this band, which is a bit more sensitive to the presence of obstacles than the 2.4 GHz band.

    Wi-Fi 6 also uses these frequency bands. In the next development, Wi-Fi 6E (E meaning “extended”) will add the 6 GHz band.

    Compared with the previous versions, Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E offer:

    • A higher speed (channels up to 120 MHz);
    • A shorter response time;
    • A better connection management in case of high user density (when a large number of users are simultaneously connected to the same network, at the same location).

    With the addition of the 6 GHz band and its 480 MHz of additional bandwidth, Wi-Fi 6E will offer more frequencies and a higher speed (up to 11 Gbps in theory).

    Last but not least, it better manages the active and sleep status of connected devices. Less strain will be put on the batteries of smartphones, tablets and laptops and they will thus last longer.

    The transition to Wi-Fi 6E will not be mandatory. Current devices, even if they do not have access to the new band, can still be used without any problems.

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