By Femi Oshiga, Vice President of Service Providers, CommScope EMEA
The allocation of new frequency bands for 5G services in the UAE is as exciting as it is encouraging. We have come to depend on fast and reliable broadband as a key part of our everyday lives, making superfast download speeds and unmatched network performance even more important.
From what we can see, 5G connectivity – supported by fiber backhaul – will play an important role as an enabler of economic growth and prosperity across communities. Its adoption by businesses, particularly small and medium-sized ones, would further enhance their ability to reach a global audience.
What’s more, with the current huge shift towards home-working / home-schooling, we are now seeing a clash of bandwidth demand between the professional requirements of parents and children whose bandwidth demands now include home learning in addition to their ever increasing consumption of bandwidth for games and video. It is only by delivering hi-speed fiber-based broadband that these demands can be met.
Commscope believes that the upgraded infrastructure in both 5G and Fiber will certainly significantly improve the user experience in the delivery of a wide range of services and applications to enhance homes and everyday lives across all areas in the UAE and across the region.
Critical decisions on where to invest
Unsurprisingly, respondents in a CommScope sponsored survey stressed telecoms infrastructure and broadband availability are becoming even more critical in supporting the economy. This has prompted network operators to sharpen their focus on protecting existing investments while making critical decisions about building 5G networks.
As customers seek ways of packaging 4G and 5G together, they are reviewing which bands they own and deploy. Network implementation will differ depending on network operators’ starting conditions. For example, 5G might be rolled out across a country with low band spectrum while capacity may be the priority for densely populated cities with access to high band spectrum. This may be the reason that more than half of respondents expect 5G to be broadly deployed in their markets by 2023.
Although more than 25 percent believe it is too early to think about what the next generation technology will look like, the majority (nearly 75 percent) agree that new use cases will generate additional value.
Advancing antenna design, tapping into open RAN interfaces and enhanced IoT management are just a few ways that operators can simplify 5G rollouts while growing their enterprise business.
Looking to the future: 5G RAN Supports the Internet of Things
Over the last few years, two acronyms that offer a vision of the future have become ubiquitous across the technology and communications industries: IoT and 5G. IoT, or the Internet of Things, is a broad term describing a future in which much of the electronic communications will be between autonomous devices. 5G is the fifth generation of mobile wireless. Let’s look at how the 5G radio access network (RAN) will support the IoT.
The IoT envisions communications between billions of devices. Although previous generations of mobile technology have provided some capability for “machine-type” communications like meter reading and asset monitoring, these capabilities have either been designed as “over the top” custom applications or they have been built into the 4G standards as an afterthought; think of narrowband-IoT and LTE-M, for example. 5G is the first standard to support machine communications from the beginning – the standard supports massive machine-type communications and ensures that the RAN will meet these needs.
Beyond changes to the standard, however, serving broad-based IoT requirements leads to additional considerations when designing the 5G RAN. Users will have high expectations that there will be sufficient coverage to deliver service to IoT devices anywhere they are installed, whether inside buildings or in the outside environment.
5G networks are being designed around three core application models:
- Speed - Enhanced mobility broadband
- IoT - Mass device deployments
- Ultra-low latency applications
So, in terms of raw capabilities in the standard, a denser network, and virtualization, the 5G RAN will support IoT applications with higher speeds, lower latency and greater reach. 5G will be the first cellular standard that satisfies the IoT’s huge demands for connectivity.
From CommScope’s perspective, this is an exciting time for 5G across the wireless industry and for the world. In addition to smartphones, tablets and customer premise devices, more than half believe we’ll see IoT devices increasing rapidly and becoming part of the 5G ecosystem.
CommScope helps design, build and manage wired and wireless networks around the world. As a communications infrastructure leader, we shape the always-on networks of tomorrow. For more than 40 years, our global team of greater than 20,000 employees, innovators and technologists have empowered customers in all regions of the world to anticipate what’s next and push the boundaries of what’s possible.