The Yellow Brick Path to 5G: Why Self-Organizing, AI-Driven Networks Need a Little Extra Magic to Work with Existing Infrastructure

| August 21, 2019

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5G will signify a monumental shift in communications, promising to be the first network to negotiate mobile and fixed networks, for man-to-man, man-to-machine, and machine-to-machine communications. The sheer amount of services and network complexity will require a step up of current network capabilities. Specifically, 5G networks will need to incorporate Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its offspring Machine Learning (ML).

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As 5G growth accelerates, CSPs have new opportunities for network differentiation and service growth

Article | July 7, 2021

Despite the COVID-induced interruptions in the first half of 2020, 5G preparations and deployment continued in earnest in the second half of 2020 and now the market – vendors, CSPS, OEMs – are ready to bring 5G to the masses of users. The arrival of Apple’s first 5G devices in 4Q20 marked the tipping point of global consumer readiness, now extending from early-adopters. After the initial phase of network launches that saw coverage built-out in major urban centres, 5G service providers should now focus on expanding coverage to as many areas of high-data demand as possible. At the same time, as CSPs gauge their 5G roll-out strategies, they shouldn’t ignore rural areas with limited-to-no high-speed broadband coverage. In many markets, particularly developing ones, CSPs should carefully assess network-sharing as a way to cost-effectively tap pent-up demand, especially given the accelerating remote working trend.

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5G Network Growth: 5G Available in 378 Cities Globally, According to VIAVI Report

Article | February 27, 2020

In a recent release, Viavi Solutions revealed new industry data that indicates a rapid surge in the spread of 5G technology over the last year. As of January 2020, commercial 5G networks have been deployed in 378 cities across 34 countries, according to the new VIAVI report, “The State of 5G Deployments.” South Korea leads the world at 85 cities with 5G availability, followed by China with 57, the United States at 50, and the U.K., with 31. In terms of regional coverage, EMEA is ahead, having 168 cities where 5G networks have been deployed, Asia is second with 156 cities, and only 54 cities are covered by 5G across the Americas. Deployments include both mobile and fixed wireless 5G networks, under the report’s parameters.

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How to accelerate network rollout without compromising 5G customer experience

Article | April 6, 2020

In today’s digitized world, consumers expect nothing less than the best from service providers. They are eager to adopt new technology but are unforgiving when it comes to poor customer experience. Consumers today don’t hesitate to use social media to voice their concerns, and once their complaints are in the public domain they can influence the perception of others easily. To keep their customers happy it’s important for service providers to keep their finger on the pulse when it comes to customer experience while accelerating their 5G rollout. Unfortunately, 5G comes with a new level of network complexity – and I predict it’s going to be more difficult than ever to understand the true experience. Is there a way to solve this conundrum from day one?

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RAN Management and Orchestration Is Central to Operators Gaining Control Over Their Own Networks

Article | July 6, 2021

The promise of Open vRAN is to give back to mobile operators some form of control over their networks. The “open” refers to the opening of RAN interfaces. It is critical because it gives operators the possibility to buy the radio unit and the baseband unit from different vendors, rather than having to buy an integrated system, and therefore helps them diversify their suppliers and reduce their dependence on traditional vendors. The “v” refers to virtual. Virtualization is about disaggregating hardware and software and enabling the use of commercial off-the-shelf servers, instead of the usual purpose-built hardware, to run network functions in order to increase flexibility and reduce costs. Across Asia-Pacific, the announcements and activities from operators including Airtel, Axiata, NTT Docomo, Rakuten Mobile, Smartfren and Telkomsel indicate a growing appetite for open and virtualized radio access networks. In countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, open RAN can for example help to address the challenges of remote connectivity and to deploy a network in places where it has been traditionally difficult to achieve a satisfactory return on investment.

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