5G: The Next Generation Network

Telecom Tech Outlook | Thursday, May 27, 2021

5G will change the way people interact and consume media; however, the change will not happen overnight.

FREMONT, CA: 5G is one of the most hyped-up technologies. Most of the facts about the technology are exaggerated; however, one point that is universally accepted is that 5G will have blistering speeds i.e., much higher bandwidth compared to previous generations. 5G networks are the next generation of mobile internet connectivity combining cutting-edge network technology and the latest high-specced devices. The systems will boost the Internet of Things technology, providing the necessary infrastructure to carry big loads of data making the world smarter and connected.

Higher bandwidth requires an upgrade and re-architecture of the underlying IP and optical transports used to transport the mobile traffic. The changes will also be necessary for the network to achieve lower latency, higher availability, and scalability than the previous generations of mobile technology. 5G opens up more spectrum bands as compared to traditional mobile communications. Today, the majority of mobile access networks have been deployed in the sub-3GHz spectrum. Two interesting spectrums cmWave and mmWave will be unlocked for 5G. These bands are higher frequencies and lower wavelengths.

In 5G, multiple-input, multiple-out (MIMO) technique is used where multiple transmitters and receivers improve the performance and capacity. While 4G uses four transmitters, 5G uses more than 16 to provide the ability to send multiple independent data streams over the same, shared frequency, and time-domain resources within a single mobile cell.

5G network will require IP and optical transport changes. 5G networks require higher capacity from access interfaces towards random access network (RAN) elements to the mobile core for a smooth flow of 5G traffic. The network will affect the low-latency transport in the Fronthaul part of the network as well as for critical IoT applications. The IP and the optical network will have to move away from point-to-point connectivity to a multipoint forwarding architecture.

Further, the IP and optical network must have the support of connectivity across traditional WAN and virtualized network functions to cater to the on-demand nature of traffic patterns.

5G network is expected to launch across the world by 2020. The speed of the network will vary between locations, countries, carriers, and devices.