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5G and Beyond Wireless Ecosystem

[Mariaberget, Stockholm, Sweden - Unspalsh]

5G Wireless: A Transformative, Disruptive Technology


- 5G and The Evolution of Communication Now and in the Future

5G shouldn’t be seen simply as the next generation of mobile communications. It’s a smart ecosystem that’s ready to ignite new innovations and highly customized services, for example, smart cities, smart home, smart health, and smart workplace. The 5G networks will be based on an architecture that will spawn an entirely new ecosystem of technological and enterprise innovations. The 5G architecture of those networks will support thousands of new applications in the consumer and business segments, including vertical markets such as manufacturing, energy, healthcare, and automobiles.

The 5G networks will require a sophisticated integration of massive computing and storage infrastructures. In the new 5G architecture, mobile operators will need to plan for the necessities of higher network capacities, denser cell-site grids, small-cell deployments at the street level, virtualized network functions (VNF), and evolving roles of mission-critical applications.

As fiber revolutionized the Internet, it is believed that 5G will do the same for mobile devices. The telecom operators worldwide want to move beyond the smartphone and the business-to-consumer models. The carriers have been bleeding capex (capital expenditures), and now they need to move beyond the smartphone consumer to the Internet of things, industrial IoT, and business-to-business models.

The world of 5G is far from simple, and it's getting more complex as the big wireless carriers roll out their 5G networks and manufacturers release smartphones capable of operating on them. The most important promise made by the proprietors of 5G wireless technology - the telecom service providers, the transmission equipment makers, the antenna manufacturers, and even the server manufacturers - is this: Once all of 5G's components are fully deployed and operational, you will not need any kind of wire or cable to deliver communications or even entertainment service to your mobile device, to any of your fixed devices (HDTV, security system, smart appliances), or to your automobile. If everything works, 5G would be the optimum solution to the classic "last mile" problem: Delivering complete digital connectivity from the tip of the carrier network to the customer, without drilling another hole through the wall.


- The Industry Is Moving From Mobility-driven Industry To AI-driven Industry

5G is the “first generation of a connected compute” wireless technology. With automotive, mobile, and industrial systems able to connect to the cloud at very low per-bit costs, there will be a synergy between AI and connected computing. “The timing of AI and 5G working together is major inflection point. We will be able to connect systems with deep-learning accelerators [in the cloud]. That won’t happen in 2020, when 5G debuts, but when we find that inflection point between the two, it will be pretty impactful for the industry.

The wireless 5G network can move large amounts of data more quickly, with some suggesting it will offer speeds up to 1,000 times faster than 4G LTE - 10 gigabits per second vs. 4G's 100 megabits per second. Best of all, 5G will do all of this high-speed data transfer with low latency, meaning there will be minimal delays. While the current 4G network has a delay time of about 50 milliseconds, 5G will cut it to only 1 millisecond. Such high speeds at low latency will revolutionize services such as artificial intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR), and live-streaming. The faster and more reliable 5G network also has the potential to power machine-learning technologies including autonomous vehicles, smart cities, and the Internet of Things (IoT), as more devices can connect and communicate with one another seamlessly.

The industry is moving from a mobility-driven model to an AI-driven industry. AI needs lots of data, from many sources, with lots of compute power. 5G technology will support massively scalable, low-latency-enabled applications that in turn will open up new ecosystems, business models, and creativity across the enterprise and residential markets in every industry. 5G will be the platform that allows data to flow between the IoT and the cloud. 


The University of Hong Kong_5
(The University of Hong Kong)

- 5G Three Use Cases

In the wireless industry, the term "5G" is being used to describe both the use of the high-band spectrum and low-band parts of the wireless spectrum to provide fifth-generation speeds that advocates say will be crucial in powering autonomous vehicles, remote health care and other next-generation technologies. 

High-band spectrum is capable of carrying vast amounts of data, but the clusters of small cells necessary to support it can be blocked more easily by things like trees and buildings. Taking advantage of the lower end of the spectrum provides lower speeds, but improves coverage, so networks have been combining them in the race to reach 5G dominance. It is a capital improvement project the size of the entire planet, replacing one wireless architecture created this century with another one that aims to lower energy consumption and maintenance costs. It’s also a huge gamble on the future of transmission technology, doubling down on consumers’ willingness to upgrade. 

5G is different from all “G” predecessors in a lot of ways. 5G is not simply a network, but rather an ecosystem that supports vertical applications and industries, enabled by the three use cases. The three sets of use cases are as follows: 


  • Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB): data-driven use cases requiring high data rates across a wide coverage area.
  • Ultra Reliable Low Latency Communications (URLLC): strict requirements on latency and reliability for mission critical communications, such as remote surgery, autonomous vehicles or the Tactile Internet.
  • Massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC): need to support a very large number of devices in a small area, which may only send data sporadically, such as Internet of Things (IoT) use cases.


The 5G future of networking promises high speeds, low latency and plenty of bandwidth to support concurrent connections, all of which will be transformative. But the excitement over this next-gen tech is about more than a speed or capacity bump. The 5G era has the potential to radically transform the way we think about and use mobile networks and networks in general.



 [More to come ...]



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