Reading the signs: 5G is coming | EDN–5G-is-coming?utm_content=buffer9759f&utm_medium=social&

One in 10 communications companies claim to have deployed 5G technology already, according to a recent survey (see: With 5G technology, the time is now).

Some parts of the 5G standard are close to being finalized, but nothing has been ratified yet. 

Furthermore, many of the constituent technologies (e.g., mmWave RF, beamforming, MIMO, etc.) are either new or not commonly used. SDN and NFV are considered critical enablers of the heightened utility and expanded flexibility that will be hallmarks of 5G networks.

The industry has a learning curve to climb. The recent set of announcements can be considered an indicator that the industry is beginning to surge up that slope. 


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Keysight Technologies, Qualcomm First to Announce Successful Demonstration of 5G Data Connection with a Modem Chipset

    SANTA ROSA, Calif., Oct. 16, 2017

    Keysight Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: KEYS) and Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, today achieved a very important milestone towards the reality of 5G commercialization. Keysight and Qualcomm Technologies successfully achieved a 5G data connection in a single-chip 5G modem with Keysight’s 5G Protocol R&D Toolset and the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ X50 5G modem chipset.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Do you need 5g connections to anything?

    Talk about the upcoming 5g connections is hot. But do consumers go so hot about new technology?

    For example, network companies and telecom operators have been pushing a lot of expectations for 5g technology. There is a current phase between 4g and 5g, which makes the market situation difficult.

    Mobile phones are already full of applications, and a large part of the day’s hours is spent watching the mobile screen. The connections are fast and all the facilities work smoothly.

    What if consumers do not feel that they need 5g or are they not willing to pay any more? Can it become a bottleneck for companies to grow in the future?

    “Whenever new technologies are introduced, the world will increase its efficiency, bringing more speed and more computing power.” The need for the world and the demand for faster telecommunications connections are not disappearing, “says Indyres CEO and analyst Mikael Rautanen .


  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The first 5G phone will come next year

    Elisa announced today that it already has over gigabit data rates in a couple of well-defined locations in Finland. such 5G speeds require their own terminals and Qualcomm will promise the first 5G phone for developers next year.

    Qualcomm actually introduced its reference equipment earlier this month. It is based on the X50 modem circuit.

    The 5G demo was performed at Qualcomm’s San Diego Research Laboratory. There were several hundreds of megahertz carriers in operation that allowed total over gigabit data rates. The link was built on the Keysight Technologies UXM 5G platform.

    “The first 5G phone” is therefore really a test platform, but in any case built into the phone’s dimensions and shape.

    Commercial X50-based smartphones could be expected to launch in 2019.


  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    HomeStandards and ProtocolsWhy 5G is in trouble – and how to fix it: Commentary
    Why 5G is in trouble – and how to fix it: Commentary

    I have a somewhat unconventional view of 5G. I just happen to believe it is the right one. It is trapped inside a category error about the nature of packet networking, and this means it is in trouble [...] 5G is making the network far more dynamic, without having the mathematics, models, methods or mechanisms to do the “high-frequency trading” [...] The whole industry is missing a core performance engineering skill: they can do (component) radio engineering, but not complete systems engineering. When you join all the bits, you don’t know what you get until you turn it on! The result will not be pretty.

    Why 5G Is in Trouble (and How to Fix It)

    As such, 5G is attempting to both extend and transcend the present “undifferentiated data sludge” model of mobile broadband.

    Firstly, it pumps the “undrinkable” mucky bandwidth harder and faster, to give a modified version of what we have today with 4G. We will gloss over the minor miracle that needs to happen with backhaul, or that the mobility protocols today with 4G struggle when you get on the train (and 5G makes it worse).

    Secondly, its other goal is to deliver differentiated “drinkable” access for different enterprise cloud and industrial applications. This essentially is a generic version of the very specific VoLTE solution developed for voice telephony in 4G, extended to any cloud application. It can be expressed as being for low-latency applications, or packed in a variety of other guises.

    The conventional wisdom is that packet networks enable networked computing (“join devices”), and networks do “work”. As such, the job of the network is to forward as many packets as fast as possible, and what matters most is “speed”. 5G fits this.

    The unconventional wisdom is that packet networks enable interprocess communications (“join computations”), and networks don’t do “work”. As such, the job of the network is to trade resources around to deliver the “just right” quantity of quality to optimise the trade-offs of QoE risk.

    The former model is “pipe”, the latter is “futures and options trading”. The former works with TCP/IP, the latter needs new packet architectures (RINA). The former can extend radio network protocols from 2G, 3G and 4G; the latter needs new ones.

    The result will not be pretty.

    In particular, 5G is primarily delivering into the tail of the last S curve of generic unassured broadband Internet access; it is not on its present path fit-for-purpose for assured cloud application access (inc VR/AR and IoT), which is the new S curve of growth.

    Telephony is virtual reality. VoLTE wasn’t solving the problem of how to extend the life of the past; it was solving a corner case of how do we communicate in future. Understand this, and the future and fate of 5G makes more sense.

    The key question is whether 5G is aimed at extending the VoLTE part of 4G (fit-for-purpose voice) or improving the rest (purpose-for-fitness Internet access). It is trying to serve two strategic masters, the past and the future, at once.

    So, what to do about it? I see three key industry actions.

    Firstly, we need to narrow the intentional semantics. 5G is trying to do too many things.

    The focus of the generic broadband access should not be peak speed, or even “antipeak” latency under ideal conditions. It should be to establish a consistent quality floor under real-world conditions with graceful degradation in overload. That floor should be adjustable so that you can segment the market by quality.

    This is a precursor to a 6G, where the two sides of unassured and assured can be unified through a shared framework for managing the quality floor.

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Is 5G for real?

    Recently, a colleague asked me, “is 5G for real?” Not exactly the question that I was expecting, but there was something behind the question that gave me pause. Of course, 5G is not real—at least not yet—but that wasn’t the question. My colleague was really asking, “is 5G going to be as impactful as everyone anticipates?” Having been involved in the wireless industry for many years, I must admit to a certain fascination regarding 5G mainly due to the innovative technologies being proposed. But that’s a story for another day.

    The question probes deeper into the business impact. When I searched for “5G business impact” I was rewarded with a paper by IHS Markit that attempts to answer my colleague’s question. IHS Markit speculates that 5G will become a General-Purpose Technology (GPT), a development so impactful that it becomes a catalyst for socio-economic transformation.

    The Enhanced Mobile Broadband (EMBB) case is probably the most relatable as everyone wants higher data rates. Faster data can, however, give rise to new applications in augmented and virtual reality

    Massive Machine Type Communication (mMTC), on the other hand, attempts to connect billions of devices and incorporate wireless into many devices not previously connected and expand their utility. We’ve seen a glimpse of this opportunity today with new IoT deployments

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Intel has introduced its first commercial 5G modem circuitry. According to the company, they will enter the market in 5G terminals in mid-2019. Intel clearly wants Apple to reject Qualcomm modems in its upcoming 5G devices.

    Intel XMM 8000 supports both frequencies of less than 6 gigahertz and millimeter frequencies. The company says it could already play a 5G call with the XMM 8000 Series modem in the 28GHz range, which is the first 5G frequency in the US market, for example.

    At the same time Intel introduced a new LTT modem. The XMM 7760 chipset supports Class 19 LTE ​​speeds, and at best, data transfer can be up to 1.6 gigabits per second. The XMM 7760 is the fastest LTE modem circuit on the market. It will not be available until next year.

    Intel has already provided Apple’s modem circuits to the previous iPhone generation. Qualcomm has been supplying Apple’s circuits since 2011 and its 5G-X50 X50 modem is still the Intel chipset in the upcoming development.


  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    BT boss: Yeah, making a business case for 5G is hard
    Also, we’ve not delayed the spectrum auction. Anyway, Three started it!

    Chief exec of BT, Gavin Patterson, has admitted the British telco is struggling to make a business case for 5G investment, given the huge costs of getting the network off the ground.

    Speaking at the Huawei Global Mobile Broadband Forum in London, Patterson said: “I talk to other CEOs around the world… and we’ve all been struggling a little bit to make the business case work.”

    He said the shift to 5G will involve “significant investment” and capital expenditure. “We’ve got to finish the job on 4G, and we’ve got to make sure we get the return on investment [on that].”

    The case for 4G was easier, as it was clear the technology would improve the poor internet experience of 3G, he said. “We’ve not found that yet on 5G.” While the transition to 5G will also create a better internet experience, it may not be until the Internet of Things takes off that new revenue streams are identified. “Finding the use cases is the biggest challenge we have at the moment.”

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Michael Potuck / 9to5Mac:
    KGI: 2018 iPhones will feature faster pre-5G baseband chips from Intel and Qualcomm, with 70%-80% of chips coming from Intel — A new report today from KGI shares projections that the 2018 iPhones will include significantly faster baseband chips from Intel and Qualcomm, although Intel will be the main supplier.

    KGI: 2018 iPhones will feature faster pre-5G baseband chips, mostly from Intel

    A new report today from KGI shares projections that the 2018 iPhones will include significantly faster baseband chips from Intel and Qualcomm, although Intel will be the main supplier.

    The most forecast from KGI predicts that 70%-80% of the improved baseband chips for 2018 iPhone models will come from Intel. This isn’t surprising news given the recent history between Apple and Qualcomm. Most recently Qualcomm accused Apple of sharing confidential information with competitor Intel. This was after Qualcomm sought to ban iPhone sales in the US and China.

    As for the new baseband chips, KGI doesn’t specify what kind of speed improvements we’re likely to see. These will be pre-5G wireless chips, but should give the new iPhones a significant speed increase with 4×4 MIMO technology compared to the current 2×2 MIMO chips used now.

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Intel Updates 5G, LTE Roadmaps
    Gbit LTE systems next year, 5G NR in mid-2019

    Intel released a few bullet points from the roadmap for its cellular baseband chips. Its plans for 5G and advanced LTE chips aim to close the gap with its rival Qualcomm.

    Specifically, Intel said that its customers will ship systems in 2018 with an upgraded XMM 7650 baseband that supports CDMA and Gbits/s downlinks. An XMM 7660 will ship in products in mid-2019 supporting 3GPP Release 14 with 4×4 MIMO and data rates up to 1.6 Gbits/s.

    In 5G, Intel completed a 28-GHz call using a dedicated silicon implementation of the Verizon 5GTF spec. It plans to have XMM 8060 chips in customer systems shipping in mid-2019 that support the still-emerging 3GPP New Radio standard, the first in a series of 5G XMM 8000 products.

    The 8060 will support both non-standalone and standalone modes as well as 2/3G and LTE. Using different RF front-end chips, it will support both millimeter-wave frequencies and bands below 6 GHz.

    Intel declined to provide data rates for the 5G chips or power consumption levels for any of the basebands. Overall, Intel aims to be a top supplier for cellular networks from RF front ends to back-end host processors.

    “We strongly believe our [baseband] capability will be industry-leading,” said Chenwei Yan, general manager of Intel’s connected products group.

    Apple started using Intel LTE basebands in as many as half of its iPhones last year following patent disputes with Qualcomm. It is said to be considering shifting entirely to Intel next year.

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Qualcomm, China Mobile, ZTE Show 5G Data Interoperability
    5G Boot Camp Launches

    A 5G interoperability test system developed by Qualcomm, ZTE and China Mobile, combined with the pending development of the first 3GPP 5G-NR standard, are good indicators of the pending frenzy over 5G; it’s a good time to take a Boot Camp course on 5G.

    Qualcomm Technologies, China Mobile and ZTE have succeeded in developing a 5G New Radio (NR) end-to-end data interoperability testing system based on the rapidly forming 3GPP R15 standard, the first stage of which is to be in draft form in just a few weeks. The system will be demonstrated at China Mobile Global Partner Conference this week (November 23).

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Intel Lays Out Ammunition in Fight with Qualcomm Modems

    Intel announced a new series of 5G wireless modems on Thursday that will be available in around a year and a half. The new series of chips, called XMM 8000, will support multiple gigabits-per-second speeds.

    Intel is laying out the ammunition with which it plans to challenge Qualcomm, which has been ironing out the kinks in its prototype 5G modem. Intel has already taken advantage of Qualcomm’s woes with both customers and antitrust regulators, poaching orders of cellular modems that Apple previously sourced only from Qualcomm.

    Intel declined to detail the performance of the new chips, which can connect everything from smartphones and tablets to sensors and cars. The silicon squares operate in both sub-6 GHz bands and millimeter waves like 28 GHz. They will support the 5G standard to be approved next month after a complex process led by Qualcomm engineer Wanshi Chen.

    Intel’s first chip, called XMM 8060, will be available in the middle of 2019, while the new network infrastructure for 5G networks is expected to be installed starting in 2020. But because it could take many years to create widespread coverage, Intel’s modems can also fall back onto 2G, 3G, and 4G networks.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G channel sounder rolls through the streets

    Since 2010, National Instruments has been providing equipment for 5G physical-layer measurements. “Channel sounding” measurements have and continue to be at the forefront of development at the physical layer. Channel sounding is an activity where engineers attempt to characterize or “sound” a wireless channel. But, there are an endless number of channels, and no two paths between a base station and mobile device are the same. Still, the more we know about how a wireless signal attenuates and reflects as it travels through cities, suburbs, rural areas, and indoors, the better transmitters and receivers can adapt to those conditions.

    5G signals will operate both above and below 6 GHz.

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G subscriptions after five years expected to be a billion

    According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, the world already has a billion 5G subscriptions by 2023. The first commercial 5G networks in the world will be introduced in 2019 and the large-scale deployment will start in 2020. The 5G network will cover 20 percent of the world’s population by the end of 2023.

    Mobile data will be used for 110 years (110,000,000,000 gigabytes) every five years, equivalent to 5.5 million years of HD video.

    Data growth is boosted by better video streaming capabilities. Video viewing on mobile devices is especially popular with people aged 15 to 24 who view streaming video up to 2.5 times more than those over the age of 45.

    In addition, traffic on networks increases high-quality videos and the emerging trend of sharing and watching the 3D content of video content. For example, viewing a 360 degree YouTube video requires about 4-5 times more web bundles than normal, same-quality videos.

    Video-based mobile traffic will grow by 50 percent per annum over the next five years. In 2023, the share of videos in all mobile data is up 75%.

    Major sports events in the near future, the forthcoming Winter Olympics in South Korea’s Pyeonchang, the World Cup in Russia, and the Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020 are the first showcase for what the new 5G experience makes for the Olympic audience.


  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    In 2023 billion 5G subscription – mobile data growth continues

    According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, the world already has a billion 5G subscriptions by 2023. According to the telecommunications operator, the first commercial 5G networks in the world will be introduced in 2019 and the large-scale deployment will begin in 2020.

    Twice a year, the Ericsson Mobility Report releases eight world-wide mobile data traffic in the next five years. Mobile data will be used for 110 years (110,000,000,000 gigabytes) every five years, equivalent to 5.5 million years of HD video.


  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Qualcomm, China Mobile, and ZTE show 5G data interoperability–China-Mobile–and-ZTE-show-5G-data-interoperability-?utm_content=buffer77810&utm_medium=social&

    Qualcomm Technologies, China Mobile, and ZTE have succeeded in developing first 5G New Radio (NR) end-to-end data interoperability testing system based on the rapidly forming 3GPP R15 standard, the first stage of which is to be in draft form in just a few weeks. The system will be demonstrated at China Mobile Global Partner Conference this week (November 23).

  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G: It’s the use cases, dummy–It-s-the-use-cases–dummy

    Network operators’ revenue opportunity for wireless connectivity is likely to exceed $3 trillion by 2026, with the vast majority of revenue growth coming from new industrial applications powered by 5G, according to a new report published by Ericsson. Meanwhile, the 5G-enabled health services segment alone will be worth $1.1 trillion by 2035, according to Qualcomm. If anyone is wondering why there’s so much hype about 5G, consider all that potential money (mostly) dependent on 5G that is tantalizingly almost in reach.

    The 3GPP is getting closer to ratifying the first 5G specifications, but has yet to do so. Manufacturers who want to supply 5G products hope that semiformal guidelines from organizations like the 5G Open Trial Specification Alliance (initiated by SK Telecom and Verizon) will be very close to the imminent standards, but keep in mind a saying popular in your grandparents’ day: close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

    And there will be more 5G standards still to come after those initial specs are ratified. It all leaves suppliers having to interpret signs and portents as best they can. Hence the scrutiny of the activities of network operators and the appetite for surveys of carriers about their 5G plans.

  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ryan Knutson / Wall Street Journal:
    Verizon says it plans to start offering home broadband over its 5G wireless network in late 2018, starting in Sacramento, CA; pricing and other details TBD

    Verizon to Sell Wireless Home Broadband, Challenging Cable
    Customers will likely have to place a box in their windows to convert signals

    Verizon Communications Inc. plans to start selling home broadband service over its wireless network in late 2018, a move to challenge the cable industry’s grip on Americans’ internet access.

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Verizon will launch 5G home internet access in 2018
    Only in a handful of areas, though.

    Verizon’s 5G wireless will soon become a practical reality… if not quite the way you might expect. Big Red has announced that it’s launching residential 5G broadband (that is, fixed-in-place wireless) in three to five markets starting in the second half of 2018. Most details aren’t nailed down at this point, but the rollout will begin in Sacramento, California.

    It’s no shock as to why Verizon is showing its cards so early. The carrier is in fierce competition with fellow incumbent AT&T, which has also been trialing 5G and hopes to deploy it nationwide by the end of 2018. Verizon wants you to know it’s keeping pace and will have a real, publicly available 5G service ready to go within a matter of months.

  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Qualcomm Sheds Light on Licensing Policy

    5G technology licensing rates, the same as the firm charged for 4G, offer perspective on Qualcomm’s dispute with Apple and wireless industry grumbling.

    While 5G standards are still being set by the 3GPP, two companies have now announced planned license rates for their intellectual property (IP). While this seems unusual when it is not clear which patents will be included in the final specifications, the leaders in the wireless industry typically contribute the most to the standards because of their extensive investments in wireless technology research. This includes companies like Ericsson and Qualcomm.

    In March, Ericsson announced plans to license its 5G IP for $5 per handset, but indicated that this could go as low as $2.50 in emerging markets. Now, Qualcomm has also announced rates for 5G that also shed some light on other aspects of the company’s licensing model.

    Qualcomm announced that it will license 5G standard essential patents (SEPs) for stand-alone mode branded phones at 2.275 percent of the wholesale price of the phone and 3.25 percent for multimode (2G/3G/4G/5G) phones. (Details are available on the Qualcomm website.) Tirias Research estimates the wholesale price at approximately 65 percent of the sale price of the phone.

    Additionally, Qualcomm will license its entire portfolio of patents for 4 percent for stand-alone mode and 5 percent for multimode.

    These are the same rates Qualcomm used for licensing 4G IP and the rates approved by the Chinese NDRC for all 4G/LTE phones sold in China. As a result, the rates have been in use and unchanged by any government regulatory agencies.

  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Home> Community > Blogs > 5G Waves
    Wi-Fi versus 5G? Nope, it’s both–Nope–it-s-both?utm_content=buffer1f9a6&utm_medium=social&

    Will 5G replace Wi-Fi? Once you get access to wireless connectivity that is faster, more robust, and has greater capacity than Wi-Fi, why would you need that and Wi-Fi? Why wouldn’t 5G replace Wi-Fi? Because it’s theoretically possible, people have been asking this question over and over for at least a couple of years.

    We asked the folks at Wi-Fi specialist Quantenna about 5G replacing Wi-Fi, and at first they didn’t even understand the question. After discussing it a bit, the reason for the misunderstanding became clear: it makes no sense. If it were to happen, wireless carriers will have to want to make it happen, and they have no reason whatsoever to want it to happen. They apparently aren’t even considering the possibility, hence the initial confusion.

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G is already here, tests start next week

    The LuxTurrim5G joint project co-ordinated by Spinverts is starting to come true. On the Nokia campus in Kilo, we will test the 5G network of 70 gigahertz bundled light bulbs. Next week, two test beds will be in operation. Next year, at the second stage of the project, ten more will be awarded.

    5G light bulb for LuxTurrim5G project in Latin, the 8×8 antenna matrix developed by Nokian Bell Labs will be installed on the columns. It works in the 70 gigahertz range. By controlling the antenna phase, the following link is made to the user / terminal device.

    70 gigahertz has a free bandwidth of 10 gigahertz. The 2 gigahertic blade reaches 15 gigabytes, so the connection is enough for many. Usually, the user does not have time to move from one area to another when he has already received the requested information, told project leader Juha Salmelin, Nokia Bell Labs.

    The 5G-tolp provides a gigabit data connection, but it also has its own limitations. – All over 6GHz technologies require line-of-sight. You just have to get used to that, Salmelin says.

    5G slots are connected to the backbone network either by fiber or by mobile connection. The bandwidth of 70 GHz is so much that some of it can be well harnessed as a return channel. On the other hand, with 5G, fiber needs to pull a lot in every place.

    The 70 gigahertz signal does not go through the houses, so the Lammin Window develops a window from which the signal passes through. This is a good illustration of the extent of LuxTurrim5G, involving operators such as a window manufacturer, Espoo City, Vaisala, and composite bodybuilders such as Exel Composites.


  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Three 5G test challenges to overcome
    Adnan Khan -December 09, 2017

    The early 2017 announcement by 3GPP that the first version of 5G new radio (NR) standards will be published around December 2017 came as a welcome sign to engineers at chipset and device developers, as well as carriers. Test companies will also benefit from having a better map to follow as the industry continues down the path to 5G.

    Early 5G deployment will have dual connectivity that will enable the networks to provide multi-standard and multi-band support in both devices and radio access. Core mobile device actions, such as scheduling and handovers, will be conducted using the LTE channel to leverage its broader coverage. mmWave will serve as the data pipe, as it provides much faster throughput for high-bandwidth services.

    A second 5G mode is standalone (SA). This version, as the name implies, can be deployed in greenfield situations and won’t rely on existing LTE elements. The first version of the 3GPP specification is not expected to address SA, leaving engineers to speculate on the conditions of this mode. Further complicating matters is that there will undoubtedly be revisions made to the NSA specifications over the next few years.

    Engineers are left with no firm guideline to develop products. To address this issue, test manufacturers must collaborate with chipset vendors and carriers to develop common assumptions about 5G and advocate that they be included in the standards.

    Cost of test
    Controlling costs will play a key role in the success of 5G. If there isn’t a compelling business case to deploy 5G services, the technology may not roll out as expected. To control test costs, engineers must make the decision as to which tests need to be done in an OTA chamber. Chipset, device, and carriers all must agree on an acceptable margin of error for certain performance parameters to eliminate the need for some OTA tests. For example, there will be a considerable amount of protocol tests that will need to be performed. Because verifying the protocol stack does not require RF measurements, protocol testing may be done without a chamber.

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Get Ready For 5G

    State of the technology, what needs to be done, and why the confluence of AI and 5G marks an inflection point.

    The 5G wireless rollout, expected to occur over the next few years, will have a major impact on both the number and types of ICs in end-user devices, and on the base stations and repeaters needed to transmit the higher frequency signals.

    The 5G standard is expected to deliver 10 Gbps of bandwidth— up to 10X the data rates achievable using the advanced forms of 4G— and sub-5ms latencies. The capabilities also will impact the amounts of data generated in a 5G ecosystem, increasing demand for servers, storage, and photonic devices.

    The 5G standard calls for a two-stage shift to higher frequency signals, starting out in the sub- 6-GHz range—much of it in the 3.5- to 4.5-Ghz range—and then moving to the more challenging millimeter-wave regime in the 24- to 43.5-GHz range. The millimeter waves transmit short distances and will face absorption issues, so the 5G standard will be a combination of 4G and 5G to support urban (5G) and long distance (4G) networks

    Progress is being made. Speaking at a recent SEMI 5G-focused event in Texas, Ian Wong, senior group manager for advanced wireless research at National Instruments (Austin, Texas), said by the end of this year “most of the baseline plumbing will be anchored” within the main 5G standards group.

    China has about 1.7 million base stations deployed nationwide, and by 2020 only about 10,000 of them will be 5G-capable base stations.

    “The carriers have been bleeding capex, and now they need to move beyond the smartphone consumer to the Internet of things, industrial IoT, and business-to- business models,”

    “From the standpoint of a test and measurement company, we are in the thick of it now and need to be ready today,” Wong said.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G: The Solution to Broadband Infrastructure

    Small towns and rural areas still do not have adequate internet access, if any at all. But there are multiple efforts in place to solve that problem.

    According to government sources, about 93% of U.S. citizens have access to fixed broadband service with speeds up to 25 Mb/s. About 73% of U.S. citizens subscribe to a high speed broadband service. Most of this is in the urban areas. Only about 72% of the citizens in rural areas have such service. Another source says that about 40% of homes in remote areas cannot get high speed internet service from a cable or telecom company. Given that huge geographical areas of the U.S. are remote and sparsely populated, that is no surprise. There are far too few potential subscribers in these regions to support cable, DSL, fiber, or other installations. Bottom line is, there is no money in it.

    The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and other government agencies have conducted studies and developed plans to solve this problem over the past several years.

    Broadband the Cheap(er) and Easy Way

    Adding fiber and cables to expand the broadband access is horribly expensive and massively time-consuming.

    Now with the forthcoming 5G wireless standards, equipment, and systems in development, there is a real viable alternative to fiber and cable. While wireless broadband service has been available for years in some areas, it is generally too slow to be really useful. The proposed 5G New Radio (NR) systems are more than fast enough to compete with fiber. Lots of small cells and backhaul will be needed but the costs of building out the rural areas are surely less than any other approach. Most of the major wireless carriers have indicated that fixed wireless broadband will be an initial service. Here is a chance to prove it.

    And let’s not forget satellite. Some satellite broadband already exists but it is pretty poor, especially the upload. Just recently the FCC approved system of 720 low-Earth orbit satellites that should be a great option for those in rural areas.

  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    MediaTek, ITRI Claim Firsts in 5G Technology

    MediaTek and Taiwan’s Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) have developed a range of technologies that include what they say is the world’s first LWA (LTE / Wi-Fi Link Aggregation) prototype system in preparation for commercialization of 5G by 2020.

    The partners have developed LWA technology that can improve network bandwidth in the 38/39 GHz millimeter range to overcome limitations with high-frequency transmission, according to a press statement today from MediaTek. In addition, the partners announced their Multi-User Superposition Transmission (MUST) technology for 5G base stations as part of an effort to build an ecosystem for Taiwan’s telecommunications industry.

    “In 2017, we have developed the world’s first dual-mode base station prototype that combines LTE with 4G and 5G, breaking through with a technology for access at high-frequencies,” said Chiueh Tzi-cker, vice president of ITRI’s Information and Communications Laboratories.

  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ultra-fast 5G wireless service declared national security priority by White House

    Who would have thought that the president who writes in 140-character missives would suddenly be interested in 70 Gbps wireless internet access?

    The White House released its congressionally-mandated National Security Strategy report (warning: PDF) yesterday. Tucked away in a section on improving America’s infrastructure was this action item: “We will improve America’s digital infrastructure by deploying a secure 5G Internet capability nationwide.” Other than natural gas, 5G wireless service was the only area of technology to get a specific calling out for infrastructure.

    5G wireless isn’t a specific technology per se, but rather a set of standards and technologies that interoperate in the millimeter wave spectrum to meet the needs of users today.

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    3GPP has told its Twitter account that it has completed its first 5G radio standard in Portugal, Lisbon. The decision was born faster than expected. Now, the industry is ready to launch the first 5G baseband circuits right next summer.

    The development of the 5G NR radio (5G New Radio) has been answered by the 3GPP RAN1 Committee. According to the organization, at least 800 developers have participated in each meeting with 3000 proposals. It is a remarkable achievement that companies and other players have now reached an agreement on 5G radio.

    The 5G networks are set to big requirements. They will cover a wide spectrum of 600-700 megahertes up to millimeter waves. The data in the networks should be able to be transmitted up to a dozen gigabit speeds and only one millisecond delay.

    Originally, the 5G radio standard had to be completed in March. However, the 3GPP organization was particularly pressured by American operators. The organization is announcing the agreed standard in the coming days.


  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G: 2017 Year in Review

    A lot happened in the world of 5G this year.

  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G Baseband Dialed in at 3GPP
    Qualcomm, Ericsson announce lab trials

    The 3GPP announced with a tweet from a meeting in Portugal it finished the first standard for a 5G cellular radio. The effort was on an accelerated path to define a spec before the end of the year for baseband chips that are now on their own accelerated path to market before July.

    The milestone concludes a process that attracted as many as 800 engineers submitting up to 3,000 proposals per meeting.

    “Given operator interest, we’ve been doing everything we can to improve the time from spec freeze to commercialization, it is a race to launch 5G devices…so as decisions were made in meetings, we shared them with the ASIC team implementing hardware — it’s all pipelined to incorporate the final changes,” said John Smee, a vice president of engineering for corporate R&D at Qualcomm.

  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    3GPP declares first 5G NR spec complete

    As expected, members of the 3GPP ratified the Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) specification for what will form the basis of commercial 5G products, capping off months of meetings and work to get consensus.


    Just a few minutes ago, the first spec for 5G has been declared complete by the 3GPP!

    Congratulations to all the brilliant people, from Qualcomm and many other companies around the globe, who worked so hard to make this happen on an accelerated timeline!

  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Monica Alleven / FierceWireless:
    3GPP, the organization that governs cellular standards, signs off on the first specification for 5G, dubbed 5G NR; full details coming later this week — As expected, members of the 3GPP ratified the Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) specification for what will form the basis of commercial 5G products …

    3GPP declares first 5G NR spec complete

    As expected, members of the 3GPP ratified the Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) specification for what will form the basis of commercial 5G products, capping off months of meetings and work to get consensus.

    The specifications reportedly cover support for low-, mid- and high-band spectrum, from below 1 GHz, like 600 and 700 MHz, all the way up to around 50 GHz, and include the 3.5 GHz band.

    The Standalone (SA) version is due for completion in June 2018, defining the full user and control plane capability for 5G NR using the new 5G core network architecture also being done in 3GPP. Both the NSA and SA versions share physical radio air interface aspects.

    At a plenary meeting in Japan in September, the decision was made to put some study items on hold in order to meet the December deadline, but those items are due to be dealt with in the first half of 2018,

    Some of the items left on the drawing table are nonorthogonal multiple access, unlicensed spectrum for NR, nonterrestrial network (channel modeling), eV2X evaluation methodology, and integrated access and backhaul.

  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    System architecture milestone of 5G Phase 1 is achieved

    The past two years have seen the 3GPP 5G architecture work progressing from the study period in 2016 to the delivery of a complete set of stage 2 level specifications. By achieving this milestone in 3GPP Release 15 the 5G system architecture has been defined – providing the set of features and functionality needed for deploying a commercially operational 5G system. SA2, the 3GPP architecture working group, has now specified the overall 5G system architecture; detailing features, functionality and services including dynamic behavior defined by information flows.

    This article offers a brief introduction to the 5G system architecture, highlighting some of its main characteristics. The complete description is provided by the delivered specifications TS 23.501, TS 23.502 and TS 23.503.

    The 5G stage 2 level specifications include the overall architecture model and principles, eMBB data services, subscriber authentication and service usage authorization, application support in general, but also specifically for applications closer to the radio as with edge computing. Its support for IMS includes also emergency and regulatory services specifics. Further, the 5G system architecture model uniformly enables user services with different access systems, like fixed network access or WLAN, from the onset. The system architecture provides interworking with and migration from 4G, network capability exposure and numerous other functionalities.

    Service Based Architecture

    Compared to previous generations the 3GPP 5G system architecture is service based. That means wherever suitable the architecture elements are defined as network functions that offer their services via interfaces of a common framework to any network functions that are permitted to make use of these provided services. Network repository functions (NRF) allow every network function to discover the services offered by other network functions. This architecture model, which further adopts principles like modularity, reusability and self-containment of network functions, is chosen to enable deployments to take advantage of the latest virtualization and software technologies. The related service based architecture figures depict those service based principles by showing the network functions, primarily Core Network functions, with a single interconnect to the rest of the system.

  33. Tomi Engdahl says:

    UK Updates 5G Strategy

    Activity around 5G in Europe is picking up steam.

    The UK government last week published an update to its 5G strategy, which outlines the next phase of work aimed at preparing the UK for 5G infrastructure investment as well as 5G testbeds and trials. Meanwhile, operators in the UK and Switzerland have in the last week conducted their first 5G tests with Ericsson and Huawei, respectively.

    5G networks will build on LTE network architecture with the introduction of cloud RANs (C-RANs) and virtualized RANs. Network function virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networking (SDN) tools and architectures could enable operators to reduce network costs and simplify deployment. Sufficient computing power will need to be put in place to process much greater volumes of data. The need to maintain low latency will mean applications running at the edge of the network, through the utilisation of edge computing.

    An industry led consortium, the UK5G Innovation Network, is due to launch in early 2018 to support this phased activity, including the numerous private sector 5G projects and other relevant government funded projects.

    Activity around 5G in Europe is picking up steam.

    In separate tests, 5G capability was demonstrated in the UK and Switzerland.

    In the UK, Vodafone UK and Ericsson, in partnership with academics at King’s College London, have successfully tested standalone pre-standard 5G using a prototype device in a central London 3.5 gigahertz (GHz) spectrum field trial. This is a first in the UK and the initial step in further collaborative work between the three parties. Until now, no one in the UK has shown pre-standard 5G working independently of existing 4G network technologies.

    Engineers were able to showcase a number of technologies at King’s College London, including massive MIMO. As mentioned earlier, the technology is the key building block for 5G. Massive MIMO uses multiple antennae to send and receive data more efficiently to boost capacity where lots of people connect to the network at the same time.

    Xiao Haijun, CEO of Huawei Switzerland, commented, “We have already demonstrated 5G at various global events, but what we managed to show here with Sunrise is unprecedented and impressively demonstrates the performance capability of 5G. It`s a full commitment from Huawei to make sure, that Sunrise can keep the leading position in the mobile network with 5G in the future.”

  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Chaim Gartenberg / The Verge:
    AT&T announces plans to start rolling out a true 5G network in 12 cities by the end of 2018

    AT&T announces plans to start rolling out a true 5G network by the end of 2018

  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    With a real 5G standard in hand, Verizon opens 5G tech incubator–Verizon-opens-5G-tech-incubator

    Verizon has established a 5G technology incubator in New York City that includes workspace and access to 5G network equipment that designated startups and researchers can play with. Verizon and AT&T intend to be among the first wireless carriers to offer commercial 5G wireless services, so Verizon set up the Open Innovation lab to encourage the development of new use cases for 5G networks.

    The 3GPP just last week approved the first subset of the extensive 5G standard; this subset is the Release 15 non-Standalone 5G New Radio specification. This part of the 5G NR spec lets service providers use their LTE infrastructure and add 5G carriers to increase data rates and reduce network latency. The full Release 15 specification is scheduled for completion next June; this version will account for the use of the 5G next-generation core network (NGC).

  36. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G’s Olympic Debut

    Just slip on your 5G virtual reality headset for a 360-degree rink-side view! Now watch your step—we’re boarding the 5G bus to the next attraction. Check out the windows: They’re in fact transparent display screens providing ultrahigh-definition video—streamed live—from a hockey player’s headcam, from drones flying above the ski slopes, and from the cockpit of a bobsled barreling down an icy track at 100…120…150 kilometers per hour!

    That’s what you can expect next month at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, if South Korea’s telecommunications companies are to be believed. KT Corp. (formerly Korea Telecom), the Games’ official sponsor, has announced plans for the first big test run of networking technologies that could herald peak download rates up to 100 times as fast as today’s 4G systems, with delays as low as 1 millisecond.

    Not to be outdone, KT’s competitors SK Telecom and LG U+ are preparing their own 5G Olympic demos.

    It’s understandable why they’re all jumping on this bandwagon. After all, there’s no bigger stage for showcasing the possibilities of a new technology than the Olympics. Just as past Games introduced the world to television (Berlin, 1936), satellite broadcasting (Tokyo, 1964), fiber optics (Los Angeles, 1984), and the CCD camera (Barcelona, 1992), Pyeongchang could give spectators a glimpse at the 5G future.

  37. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G may account for 40% of wireless network infrastructure spending by 2025

    A new report package produced by Market Research Reports, Inc. indicates that 5G networks will account for more than 40% of all wireless network infrastructure spending by the end of 2025.

    According the the analyst, “The wireless network infrastructure market is currently in a phase of transition, as mobile operators seek to address increasing mobile traffic demands amidst global economic uncertainties. This paradigm shift is bringing new challenges and opportunities to infrastructure vendors.”

    The report’s executive summary notes that in 2016, global 2G, 3G and 4G wireless infrastructure revenues stood at nearly $56 billion. The analyst estimates that the market will shrink by 4% in 2017, primarily due to a decline in standalone macrocell RAN infrastructure spending.

    The firm concludes that “by 2020, 5G networks will account for nearly 5% of all spending on wireless network infrastructure. With significant investments expected in 5G NR, NextGen (Next Generation) core and transport (fronthaul/backhaul) networking infrastructure – between 2020 and 2025, this figure will further increase to more than 40% by the end of 2025.”

  38. Tomi Engdahl says:

    AT&T plans to expand reach of 5G, AT&T Fiber, and

    AT&T says it anticipates launching mobile 5G service in a dozen markets by late 2018, alongside its plans to expand the reach of AT&T Fiber for consumers and businesses, and of AT&T’s plans include becoming the first U.S. company to launch mobile 5G service in a dozen markets by late 2018, the company attests. With AT&T being a driving force for standards acceleration in 2017, the company expects its 5G services to be based on 5G industry standards.

    In December 2017, 3GPP, the international wireless standards body, finished crucial elements of 5G new radio (NR) standards as a result of that acceleration. Hardware, chipset, and device manufacturers can begin expediting development since these specifications are now available, enabling AT&T to deliver mobile 5G services.

    In addition to the company’s plans to provide mobile 5G to consumers, AT&T says it should trial 5G technology with various sized businesses. Last January, the company announced that initial lab trials of 5G demonstrated support of 14-Gbps transmission, and latency of less than 3 ms (see “AT&T outlines 5G, other broadband plans”). AT&T plans to use 5G technology to help businesses throughout several industries evolve business operations and improve customers experiences in 2018.

  39. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G Tracker: AT&T Promises Mobile 5G; Verizon Teases Fixed Wireless

    5G is having a bit of a moment. In December, the standards group 3GPP issued the first 5G standard in Release 15, which describes Non-Standalone 5G New Radio. This was a big deal for the telecommunications industry

    5G NR, as it’s called, is not one technology, but a mishmash of wireless advances that will build on existing LTE networks in early phases before launching in full 5G mode.

    5G NR is designed for a particular set of outcomes, including enhanced mobile broadband (more data for your smartphone), and ultra-reliable low latency communications (for the peace of mind you’d need to operate a robotic surgery over a wireless network).

    Following that exciting standards announcement (which is about as exciting as they get), the first week of 2018 kicked off with plenty of 5G news coming just before CES 2018.

    Verizon Teases Commercial Fixed Wireless for Sacramento

    AT&T Promises Mobile 5G in 2018

    AT&T announced it would have 5G ready for mobile phones in a dozen U.S. markets this year. And they couldn’t help but add that they expect to be the first U.S. carrier to deploy it.

  40. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G Rolls Up its Sleeves in 2018

    I expect 2018 will be a productive year when wired and wireless network operators really start sorting out what’s possible from the hype with 5G cellular.

    This year it’s time to get down to what’s really possible. Densification, virtualization, optimization and simplification of networks will continue to be operator goals. I also see the spirit experimentation among customers, as test beds and trials build steam.

    Among the many challenges ahead, perhaps the greatest is the convergence of wired and wireless networks, opening up new business models. Many of our customers are reorganizing around this concept, breaking down silos within their company as formerly separate businesses come together.

    Many operators are focused on driving fiber deeper into their networks to enable Centralized or Cloud RAN architectures and large-scale small-cell deployments that bring the fiber closer to subscribers. Companies with existing fiber networks are monetizing them by selling access for small cell backhaul. Some are even building their own small cell networks and leasing them out to wireless operators.

    These dynamics are spawning unlikely partnerships between cable companies, wireless providers and neutral hosts. Market dynamics are in flux which, of course, can create anxiety but also points toward new opportunities.

    There’s also convergence of licensed and unlicensed spectrum as new frequencies such as 3.5 GHz open up as one of the global 5G bands. The Citizen Broadband Radio Service in the U.S. will support both licensed and unlicensed users and enable new use cases such as private and wholesale LTE networks.

    Pesky small cells, millimeter waves

    Among the near-term challenges, small cells are still too hard to deploy. Site acquisition is a huge challenge. We’re starting to see larger volume projects, but it still takes longer than anyone wants.

    Zoning processes that last 12 months or more are too long. My hope for 2018 is real movement on nationwide efforts to standardize and speed small cell deployments. We need to agree on a common set of siting rules, nationalize roles and compress timelines for the plotting cycle of new sites.

    5G’s use in millimeter wave bands brings other challenges because signal distortion is rampant in the higher frequencies. Fixed wireless access deployments in mm-wave bands will be well suited to massive MIMO and active antennas.

  41. Tomi Engdahl says:

    5G: Let the Hype Commence

    Just as with 4G, the marketers will announce 5G products and services before the real thing is ready. Brace yourself for the onslaught.


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