What 5G Promises - And How it Delivers
Major digital product innovations bring with it the need for technology development to provide greater sustainability and bring on next generation customer experiences. Some burst on the scene and are quickly adopted; others trickle down more slowly, letting anticipation build before they are finally available. 5G technology falls into the latter category.
A Long-Awaited Technology
As early as 2012 the potentials of 5G were being analyzed by carriers, university researchers, and several governments including South Korea and the EU. But millimeter and microwave technologies were initially very expensive, which slowed the scale of growth and improvements in the semiconductor design and manufacturing that was needed for 5G to flourish and become mainstream. Handsets and devices that could take advantage of the high speeds weren’t ready. The cost of creating these networks was enormous.
Demand for 5G
In recent years, advancements in technology have not only enabled 5G, they have created the demand. With the constantly growing demand for cellular data from smartphones, tables, Internet of Things sensors, and more, current 4G networks just can’t handle the load. 5G networks provide much more capacity – by one estimate, 7 trillion devices could be connected. That means everyone on earth could have 1,000 devices before the network is overloaded.
How 5G Delivers
The obvious reason to move to 5G is the increased bandwidth. Currently, bandwidth is limited by the availability of frequencies in the cellular range.
Basic laws of physics teaches us that lower frequencies travel further and penetrate solid objects better. Unfortunately, much of the lower frequency bandwidths are jam-packed full of other devices: radio stations, television stations, not to mention cordless phones, radio-controlled toys, garage door openers, baby monitors, and more. As more frequency bands are licensed, fewer “prime spots” are left for cellular devices. New technologies, therefore, take advantage of higher-frequency ranges which are still open.
Engineers are experimenting with using 5G signals in the 6 GHz to 100GHz range. These superhigh frequencies use “millimeter” waves. The good news is that there is a lot of bandwidth available in that spectrum. The bad news is that these signals get absorbed easily by simple objects. Engineers are working on solving that problem by making inexpensive small cells deployed very close together, as well as by millimeter waves on other frequencies – including current LTE and WiFi networks, and additional bands that the FCC is opening up lower in the spectrum.
Reducing Power Consumption
Enabling IoT devices to communicate with cellular data can also allow them to be placed in more distributed or remote areas. One difficulty has always been in providing them power. Communicating over current cellular connections require the device to use a great deal of power, often making batteries impractical. 5G draws less power than 4G/LTE, enabling more and smaller devices.
Smarter Devices make Smarter Connections
In the current network system, phones usually create an uplink/downlink with the local base station to connect to the network. This scenario is most likely to change. 5G networks will likely rely on multiple different frequency bands that carry information at different rates and have wildly different propagation characteristics. Devices might use one band to downlink at a low rate and another band as an uplink at a high rate. In other words, the network will change according to a device’s data demands at that moment.
New classes of devices are emerging that communicate only with other devices - for example, IoT sensors sending data to a server. These smart devices will be capable enough to decide when and how to send the data most efficiently.
Next-generation 5G technology will play a crucial part in shaping the future because it promises fast, reliable, always-on connectivity with huge bandwidth. Adjusting to this market requires enterprise OEMs to move from single dimensional legacy environments to multi-platform, dynamic cross application ecosystem with state of art technology, workflow and solutions.
At CSS Corp, we understand the business risk caused by downtime and reactive delivery models. We propose strategies and solutions to modernize and manage customer operations effectively through our deep expertise in the network and telecom domain. Our solutions have helped customers build strong telecom and networking infrastructure business in broadly two areas:
- Telecom network modernization & deployment services - Provides an accelerated way of modernizing legacy networks and delivering seamless experience and uptime to end customers e.g. 3G to 4G, 4G to 5G, SDN / NFV capabilities
- Network and telecom operations services - End-to-end multi-vendor fault, performance, and availability management for delivering business applications & services, end-to-end network asset lifecycle management from provisioning to operations to decommissioning