By Charles Yang, President, Huawei Middle East
As we stand at the beginning of a new decade, we can say that we are now well and truly in an intelligent era, increasingly powered by 5G connectivity. The fully connected, intelligent world is no longer an abstract idea—it is becoming today’s reality. Together, we are transforming industries and improving human lives.
How more of us connect to this new world is the biggest question to be answered in the intelligent era. Advanced ICT solutions will be key to meeting customer requirements for digital transformation, helping to achieve business success while facilitating the further development of an intelligent future.
This question actually took center stage at our recent global Industrial Digital Transformation Conference, in which we previewed five trends of an intelligent world 10 years from now, and proposed a foundation built on new types of connectivity, computing, platform, and ecosystem. Information flows with new ICT, such as 5G, AI, and IoT, will help us build the foundation from which everything originates.
5G is perhaps the greatest evolution of our industry in the past decade. Everyone in our society stands to benefit from taking advantage of the possibilities and value offered by 5G. We have seen this first hand as Middle East countries were among the first wave of 5G commercial launches, standing at the global forefront. Many operators in the region have already deployed or announced their plans to deploy large-scale networks. As a result, new 5G-powered applications are supporting a wide range of verticals and industries, contributing to national development visions.
This year, Huawei will accelerate the uptake of 5G ecosystem by operating trials related to 5G solutions for advanced vertical sector services. We recently launched the 5G Partner Innovation Program, for example, in which we plan to invest US$20 million into innovative 5G applications over the next 5 years, contributing to a thriving 5G ecosystem and accelerating the commercial success of 5G.
With this in mind, Huawei is envisioning an amazing future enabled by 5G which is gearing up and ready for worldwide commercialization. While 5G enriches people’s lives, it will inject new vitality into the digitization of all industries, and drive the advancement of societies and economies.
We see this new 5G value being created from three perspectives: new value for businesses, new value for networks, and new value for society.
For businesses, the value of 5G is clear. It will spur the growth in business to business (B2B), business to consumer (B2C), and business to human (B2H) applications. Collaboration within the ecosystem will lead the way towards shared successes that will see 5G empower and improve the global workforce throughout all industries. New exchange to exchange (E2E) deterministic networks will underpin B2B industries, accelerating growth and innovation through services such as 5G private line, 5G campus, and 5G video surveillance, as well as private networks with wide coverage IP RAN. 5G & PON will further create ubiquitous wireless and wired gigabit-level networks for digital enterprises.
The monetization of 5G services is also quickly reshaping B2C business models. High-quality networks, innovative services, and flexible packages will be the key to 5G’s success amongst end consumers. For B2H applications, 10G PON-ready networks—which can be built at the cost of GPON—will enable a premium Wi-Fi and artificial intelligence (AI) experience for users which telecom carriers can monetize.
Speaking of carriers, 5G will also bring new value for networks. Carriers are already gearing up for 5G with all-scenario, simplified E2E networks. At Huawei, the time is now to give our customers simplicity, while we take on the complexities ourselves. Wireless solutions will play a significant role in this value creation. Huawei has an all-scenario, simplified 5G solutions portfolio which enables carriers to stay ahead, supported by premium capabilities and engineering that accelerates 5G performance.
Creating new value for networks will also be driven by building integrated transport networks with service level agreement (SLA) assurance, as well as establishing optimal cost per bit for the 5G era. We are doing this today by establishing agile and efficient 5G deterministic core networks focused on connectivity, computing, and what we call 5G-X capabilities; the combination of 5G with other technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), big data, and virtual and augmented reality.
This leads us to creating new value for societies. The opportunities to be had in a 5G+X world are truly limitless. While 5G alone is an upgrade to our communications infrastructure, things like AI applications provide us with more powerful computing engines.
This can be seen clearly in the global shift towards smarter cities. Countries throughout the Middle East—and indeed the world—are currently seeking ways in which their cities can become more sustainable and efficient. 5G may well be the answer. 5G networks already offer increased energy efficiency, featuring innovative power amplification technology and high-performance chips to reduce equipment power consumption. 5G also supports efficiency in dense urban environments by facilitating the use of smart IoT solutions that monitor and optimize energy use.
New value for societies is in part being driven by governments who are now able to launch fresh services and applications with 5G; ones that bridge the digital divide and provide equitable access to everyone to thrive in the intelligent era. The latter point is especially pertinent. Connectivity for all and providing connectivity for the unconnected will spur productivity throughout society, enabling progress for everyone. A connected city is one in which citizens are empowered to thrive.
As one of the most important elements of any society, security will be bolstered by 5G. The network itself is more secure than its predecessors. Ecosystem partners should work together to increase this strong security. Collaboration is necessary for advancement, and we firmly believe that excluding any specific players within the ecosystem will prove detrimental—particularly when it comes to risk mitigation.
More recently, Huawei and several industry partners launched a 5GDN Industry White Paper. Since the establishment of 5G Deterministic Networking Alliance (5GDNA) last year, this is the first time the 5GDNA has introduced 5G Deterministic Networking (5GDN) comprehensively, including definition, concepts, key technologies, and successful use cases of 5GDN. This release opens a new chapter for 5G development and promotes development of more network applications.
In summary, only together can we unleash the full potential of 5G in the intelligent era. The development of 5G networks and the development of the 5G ecosystem reinforce one another. Huawei stands ready to do our part to develop the ecosystem and drive the maturity of the industry, and we actively seek partners to accompany us on this mission.