Category Archives: 5G

France to open frequencies for 5G pilots

 

French regulator Arcep announced it will grant temporary licences to test 5G in the 3.4GHz to 3.8GHz and 26GHz bands in a bid to assess the potential of new network technology and identify challenges to widescale deployment.

The frequencies, which Arcep identified as prime candidates for 5G, will be available to operators and vertical industries, with the results used to help form the country’s 5G strategy. Arcep said one of its main objectives was to assess how the technology can be built to satisfy the needs of a range of industrial and IoT use cases, rather than just identifying the technical challenges of rollout.

Licences for the 3.4GHz to 3.8GHz bands will be available in selected metropolitan areas including Lyon, Bordeaux, Nantes, Lille, Le Havre, Saint-Etienne, Douai, Montpellier and Grenoble. Other bands or locations are available on request.

“5G is often touted as the generation that will be able to satisfy the connectivity needs of a wide variety of uses, from the public internet to critical industrial internet communications, by way of the ambient communications of a ubiquitous Internet of Things,” Arcep said in a statement.

“Conducting 5G pilots should help deepen a general understanding of the systems for cohabitation between players, and test out business models.”

“5G will probably constitute an amalgamation of different innovations (active antenna, use of very high frequencies, multiplication of small cells…) that could significantly alter the way a mobile network is deployed. Arcep wants to work in tandem with the sector to get a jump on the potential effects of these innovations.”

In addition to the trials, Arcep is preparing its plan for the allocation of 5G licences and a government consultation is also underway.

The move comes shortly after a deal with operators to secure €3 billionin investments to expand 4G across France, as the regulator steps-up its bid to improve connectivity in the country.

Source: Chris Donkin. Mobile World Live

Consumers’ 5G wish list outlines action plan for operators

5g

  • Operators regarding mobile broadband offerings now and in a 5G future
  • Consumers predict majority of 5G-enriched services will go mainstream within three to four years of 5G launch
  • 44 percent of smartphone users worldwide are willing to pay for 5G-enabled services, but consumers envision an end to paying for each gigabyte consumed in a 5G future

What will it take for operators to gain consumers’ trust as they gear up for a 5G future?

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) today presented Towards a 5G consumer future – its Consumer and Industry Insight report that discusses the six calls to action from consumers that operators need to act upon to provide a foundation for adoption of 5G technology.

The report, the biggest 5G consumer expectation study to date, represents the views of 800 million smartphone users worldwide.

Jasmeet Sethi, Senior Advisor, Ericsson Consumer & Industry Lab, says: “Our latest study does not look at a consumer view on 5G in isolation, but rather uncovers unmet consumer needs that must be fulfilled by operators on the way to 5G. From offering an effortless buying experience to focusing on real network performance, consumers are demanding changes they would like to see already made today.”

Here are the six consumer calls to action:

Provide us with effortless buying experience

Consumers perceive the telecom market to be too complex. With six in 10 smartphone users grappling with the complexity of mobile data plans, there is considerable misalignment between what users buy and what they use. With only three in 10 smartphone users satisfied with the way their operator presents plans online, the digital telecom experience is neither simple nor effortless.

Offer us a sense of the unlimited

Consumers aren’t counting on unlimited data plans, but they are looking for a sense of the unlimited. Peace of mind rather than actual use is the main motivator behind buying unlimited data plans and operators are urged to explore alternative ways to offer this feeling of freedom.

Treat gigabytes as currency

The average smartphone user has 31 gigabytes of unused mobile data left over per year, enough to make 65 hours of video calls, spend 517 hours streaming music, or binge-watch six seasons of a TV show like Game of Thrones, equating to as much as 1.5 terabytes over their lifetime. Two in five consumers would like to use this excess as currency and expect to be able to save, trade or gift unused data.

Offer us more than just data buckets

Faster broadband speeds and fair wireless contracts are considered more important than the data buckets that currently dominate the market. As bundled video content and innovative data plans play an increasingly important role in the choice of operator and service bundle, consumers want operators to innovate, evolve and personalize data plans.

Give us more with 5G

Contrary to the belief that consumers are uninterested in 5G, globally the idea of 5G services appeals to 76 percent of smartphone users; 44 percent are in fact willing to pay for 5G. Consumers expect most 5G services to go mainstream within 3 to 4 years of the launch and over 50 percent expect to be using 5G-enriched services within two years of the launch.

Over a third expect 5G to offer capabilities beyond speed, network coverage and lower prices: improvements such as better battery life and the ability to connect not only devices but also the Internet of Things. Consumers also predict an end to paying for gigabytes consumed and instead expect to pay a single fee for each 5G service or connected device.

Keep networks real for us

Moving towards a 5G future, consumers are calling on operators to avoid baseless marketing slogans and instead focus on real network experience, increasing the honesty of their marketing. The report shows that only four percent trust operators’ own advertising and network performance statistics.

The insights in the report are based on Ericsson ConsumerLab’s global research activities of more than 20 years, and draw on data from a survey of 14,000 iPhone and Android smartphone users aged between 15 and 65. The views expressed in the survey are representative of 800 million consumers across Argentina, Brazil, China, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, the UK and the US.

Source: Ericsson

VODAFONE AND HUAWEI DEMONSTRATE HOW 5G WILL REVOLUTIONISE DRIVING

Vodafone car demo

We’ve heard a lot about AI-driven cars in recent years, but 5G is set to enable another kind of driving revolution. Vodafone has teamed up with Huawei to demonstrate how 5G can be used to remotely control a vehicle.

The test took place at the 2017 Global Mobile Broadband Forum. It involved a car located on the University of Surrey campus being controlled from London’s ExCel centre some 50 kilometres (30 miles) away. This was done via a fully encrypted pre-standard 5G connection.

It was intended to demonstrate how, in future, it would be possible to remotely control machines in dangerous or extremely remote environments. The example has been given of mining or waste disposal situations, but it would also have a number of potential applications in day to day life.

For example, in a recent white paper on practical 5G use case scenarios, Huawei highlighted the potential for a premium concierge service in which the driver of your car does so from elsewhere. This could “enable someone to participate in a conference or to work while on a journey, or to support a taxi service, or to help a person without a driving license, or when they are ill, intoxicated, or otherwise unfit to drive”.

5G is uniquely suited to hosting such a feature. Crucial to this is the forthcoming network standard’s extremely low latency of less than 10 milliseconds, which will enable instructions to be received and acted upon as quickly as the human eye can perceive change.

In the case of the recent Vodafone test, this resulted in a mere six centimetres of braking deviation when the car travelled at a speed of around 20 kilometres per hour.

Another benefit of 5G network technology to remote car control is its heightened level of security. After all, the last thing you would want in such a situation is interference from a malicious third party.

Luke Ibbetson, Vodafone Group’s Head of Research and Development and Technology Strategy, said: “The 5G standard is close to completion and it’s encouraging to see how important capabilities such as low latency and increased reliability are shaping up.

“This innovative demonstration shows us an exciting glimpse into the future, complementing 5G’s role in providing enhanced mobile broadband. It is a milestone in the work we’ve been doing with Huawei to show how our network will support 5G connected vehicles in future.”

This was the first test of its kind in Europe. The world’s first such demonstration occurred in June 2017, when Huawei teamed up with China Mobile and SAIC Motor in Shanghai. However, in this initial test the driver was only situated 30 kilometres away from the car.

Useful reading: 5G and the connected car

Source: Jon Mundy 5G

Verizon awards 5G contract to Ericsson

crowded-street-in-new-york---roy1413-3

  • Companies to deploy commercial 5G network in select US markets in second half of 2018
  • Ericsson to provide 5G Core network, 5G Radio Access Network (RAN), transport and associated services
  • First pre-standard deployment paves the way for accelerated 5G commercialization of 3GPP-standards based solutions

Verizon has selected Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) to provide networking equipment for their commercial 5G launch. Verizon will deploy the pre-standard 5G commercial radio network and the 5G Core network in select markets in second half of 2018.

The companies are demonstrating continued industry leadership by accelerating the path to 5G. Verizon and Ericsson plan to work together to move the mobile ecosystem towards rapid commercialization of 5G.

Ed Chan, SVP Technology Strategy and Planning for Corporate Networking and Technology, Verizon says: “5G will change the way we work, interact, learn and play. Through our work with Ericsson, we are creating a clear roadmap and building a robust ecosystem that will enable us to maximize the potential of 5G.”

Fredrik Jejdling, Executive Vice President and Head of Business Area Networks, Ericsson, says: “Our pioneering work with 5G will make US consumers and businesses among the first in the world to benefit from the transformative services of the new technology. It further illustrates how our global 5G portfolio, designed to support 5G NR as standardized in 3GPP, enables first movers in the early commercialization of 5G networks.”

During the past year, Ericsson and Verizon have conducted fixed-wireless 5G trials using mmWave spectrum in multiple cities and residential neighborhoods with different geographies and housing densities. This has been a critical step in Verizon’s plan to deploy a first-of-its-kind fixed wireless broadband network.

These trials have also been instrumental in understanding 5G technologies and mmWave propagation used in the Verizon 5GTF and the coming 3GPP 5G NR standard. These new technologies are expected to be critical in meeting the increasing connectivity requirements for emerging, mobile and fixed wireless, consumer broadband experiences, such as streaming high-definition video, immersive virtual/augmented reality, and connected cloud computing.

 

Source: Ericsson

Arqiva secures rights to deploy small cell telecoms infrastructure across the London Borough of Waltham Forest

The up to 10 year contract grants Arqiva access to around 16,000 lampposts across the borough

Arqiva, the leading UK communications infrastructure company, has today announced it has secured the exclusive access rights to street furniture across the London Borough of Waltham Forest for the future deployment of telecommunications infrastructure.

The up to 10 year contract grants Arqiva access to around 16,000 lampposts across the borough, which it will be able to use for the deployment of small cell technology to help the UK mobile network operators (MNOs) to further expand mobile coverage and capacity over the coming years. Small cells will also be crucial to the delivery of 5G.

Small cells are units that can be installed onto street furniture and the sides of buildings to boost mobile capacity in areas where demand is particularly high or existing coverage is poor. They can also be applied inside venues such as shopping centres, where increased footfall puts a strain on existing communications infrastructure.

They allow people to continue using the connected functions of their smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices without any interruptions.

The deal represents Arqiva’s 14th concession of this kind in London, following similar contract wins in Barnet, Brent, Camden,  Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Hounslow, Islington, Kingston-Upon-Thames, Lambeth, Merton, Richmond upon Thames and Wandsworth. Arqiva also has similar deals in Manchester, Southampton, Colchester, Eastbourne and Medway.

As the project commences, Arqiva will also deploy Wifi access points – mounted on lampposts – in town centres across the borough to provide free public access to Wi-Fi services.

“As data and voice usage increases exponentially, it is fast becoming essential for Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to deliver sufficient outdoor connectivity for their customers in dense urban areas.

“Arqiva’s portfolio of communications sites means we are uniquely able to help the MNOs deliver the required coverage and capacity, whether it is towers and rooftops for macro sites, or street furniture for small cells.

“Street furniture such as lampposts has a crucial role to play in providing 4G signal to densely populated areas now, and preparing for 5G. We can see the arrival of 5G connectivity on the horizon and density of infrastructure is crucial to its delivery. This is particularly true for the future delivery of 5G Fixed Wireless Access broadband to homes.

“Local authorities are recognising how important connectivity is for their residents and business and we are excited to be working with Waltham Forest as our 14th London Borough partner.”

“I’m really pleased to welcome Arqiva to Waltham Forest as we help our residents move toward a digital future. We use digital technology more every day to carry out jobs from ordering shopping and services, to keeping in touch with friends and relatives, to accessing council services. To do this we need fast online access – and that is precisely what this agreement brings for residents and visitors.

“Installing cell units into street furniture is an innovative and forward-thinking idea that shows we in Waltham Forest are committed to improving our digital offer for all to enjoy. We are glad to be able to draw on Arqiva’s expertise and experience bringing high-speed internet access to the streets of other London boroughs.”

Source: Arqiva

The Government announces 5G Competition to cement UK’s position as World leader in development of 5G

 

5g-testbed

The UK Government has announced a new £25 million competition to cement the UK’s position as a world leader in the development of 5G technology.

Digital Minister Matt Hancock revealed the 5G Testbeds and Trials competition as part of the UK Government’s £740m National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF), which was set up to support next-generation digital infrastructure like 5G.

The government is seeking further locations across the country for test sites in order to support the rollout of 5G network technology. To that end, it’s inviting project proposals to receive grants of up to £5 million.

Winning project proposals must come from UK registered organisations that are carrying out projects in the UK and working in collaboration with others. They must also be industry-led, or at least have a strong industry component.

Submissions for the 5G Testbeds and Trials Programme will be accepted from October 23, and the process will close on December 13.

Minister for Digital Matt Hancock said: “To stay competitive we must be at the cutting edge of new technology and we are determined to be one of the first countries in the world to use 5G. In these very early stages we want all ideas, from all parts of the country, that will help us get the technology and the roll-out right to have a nationwide network of 5G innovators.

“It’s all part of our determination to make Britain the best place in the world to start and grow a digital business, and deliver for all citizens now and in the years to come.”

It was during the 2016 Autumn Statement that the UK Government first announced its intention to invest in a programme of 5G testbed intitiatives. This has led to the likes of BrightonBasingstoke and the North Eastall establishing 5G testbed programmes.

Besides these Bristol University, King’s College London, and The University of Surrey have all teamed up to create a world class 5G technology test network of their own.

In recent days Worcestershire has joined the roster of UK regions looking to supply their own 5G testbed facilities. It will be interesting to see which UK city or county will be next.

Image credit: Panchenko Vladimir/Shutterstock.com

Source: 5G.co.uk

5G done testing by BT Labs prove successful

5G to control drones and keep them airborne

5G drone trial

In a test carried out by uVue, a drone was successfully operated over BT’s pre-5G network slicing testbed at BT Labs, Martlesham in Suffolk.

The network slice (which is a virtual network partitioned away from the main network with dynamically allocated resources), apparently worked perfectly, with Maria Cuevas, BT’s Head of Converged Core Network and Services Research noting that:

“The demonstration was most effective in showing that we are able to protect a private ‘slice’ of the network for uVue’s drone as the rest of the network was deliberately overloaded. The slice allocated to drone control remained perfectly functional and stable, enabling the drone to remain responsive to the pilot’s control at all times.”

And this wasn’t just a fluke, as well over 100 flights were executed, proving that this is a viable method of drone control.

And not only is it viable, but also advantageous, as it allows drones to operate with existing air traffic control systems, and even in its pre-5G state is capable of streaming high-definition video from the drones across the network at low latency – in this case allowing the footage to be displayed to an audience.

Russ Delaney, Director of Tech Ops at uVue, an ex-British Army helicopter instructor and drone pilot summed up the potential, saying:

“I was delighted at how responsive the drone control was over the mobile network and at how reliable the private slice was. Delivery of real-time low latency HD video footage back over the network provided a completely new standard for ‘eye in the sky’. This is a key milestone in UAV development, showing that cellular networks have immense potential to provide uncompromised drone control and hence air safety.

The video below simply shows a uVue drone demonstration, not connected to the trials performed at BT Labs.

Source: 5G James Rogerson

3 UK seeks High Court review of 5G auction rules

3 UK seeks High Court review of 5G auction rules – Mobile World Live 3 UK seeks High Court review of 5G auction rules – Mobile World Live

3 UK is set to launch a legal challenge against Ofcom’s rules for an upcoming 4G and 5G spectrum auction, which the operator said fails to address competition concerns.

A company representative confirmed it notified Ofcom of its intent to seek a judicial review in the UK’s High Court. It expects the process to be complete by early 2018 – a timeline it said would not impact the country’s 5G rollout timetable.

However, as the UK’s auctions for 4G and 5G spectrum were scheduled to be held by the end of 2017, legal action would significantly delay the allocation process.

In a statement, the company representative said: “It is absolutely vital that the regulator gets this auction right for the long-term benefit of all consumers. For a relatively short process, we feel it is a proportionate response to request an independent review of Ofcom’s proposal, which we feel unduly puts at risk its stated objective of a competitive four-player market and is to the detriment of UK consumers.”

The move comes as little surprise. 3 is a long-term critic of the division of spectrum in the UK and threatened action if Ofcom failed to address the market dominance of BT and Vodafone with its auction rules.

In its subsequent announcement, the regulator said it would impose a spectrum cap to limit the participation of the UK’s largest operators in the 3.4GHz band – earmarked for 5G. Its new rules also effectively banned EE from bidding on 40MHz of 2.3GHz spectrum also set to be allocated.

Following the announcement, 3 slammed Ofcom for not going far enough, with CEO Dave Dyson describing the rules as a “kick in the teeth” for consumers.

Although Telefonica’s O2 UK was also critical of Ofcom’s new guidelines, it appeared to rule out legal action, highlighting the importance of pressing ahead with the auction quickly.

Source: Mobile World Live

Arqiva acquires 28GHz spectrum licence for 5G fixed wireless access in London

Arqiva, the leading UK communications infrastructure company, has today announced its acquisition of an additional 28GHz spectrum licence from intelligent managed services provider, Luminet.

The Region A licence for 2x 112MHz covers Central and Greater London and bolsters Arqiva’s existing nationwide spectrum band ownership.

The 28GHz spectrum band is the standard band used for 5G connectivity trials in the USA, Japan and South Korea focused on Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) – offering promise for future 5G implementations in the UK.

The next key milestone in 5G deployment will be March 2018 when the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) completes Release 15. This will be the first standardisation of 5G, paving the way for FWA to be the first commercial release of 5G technology.

This commercialisation of 5G standards will allow vendors and operators to deploy at scale an ecosystem that spans from chip-set to network equipment on a global basis, therefore driving further economies of scale.

“5G connectivity is a highly debated topic, especially with regards to what it will deliver and by when. However, the FWA component is set for a head start thanks to the drive from major global fixed line and mobile operators as both a substitute and a companion to traditional fibre services. 3GPP certification is critical to achieving global acceptance.

“5G FWA is an exciting opportunity to deliver true ultrafast broadband above 500Mbps to millions of households; this is especially relevant in the UK where so few households are connected by fibre to the home (FTTH) or fibre to the cabinet (FTTC). FWA has the ability to become a truly alternative technology to deliver fibre-like services.

“In purchasing this additional licence we are able to further our ambitions in this area, standing ourselves in good stead to deliver a compelling 5G FWA wholesale service to UK mobile and fixed operators across the country, and with even more capacity in Greater London.”

Arqiva is set to conduct the UK’s first 5G FWA field trial, in partnership with Samsung, in London this summer. Using the 28GHz band, the trial will explore the possibilities of ultra-fast, high bandwidth connectivity via wireless technology rather than conventional wired services.

“The advent of 5G is set to be one of the most exciting digital developments of the decade, and we will be following Arqiva’s trial with interest.

“Divesting the spectrum was a strategic business decision for Luminet as we continue to build on our existing 400Sqkm London network and enhance our focus on wholesale for our intelligent GB connectivity and computing services.”

Source: Arqiva

5G could bring massive opportunities for mobile operators says report

3G report

Mobile network operators have a massive opportunity as 5G’s final form begins to take shape, but they also face increased competition in the shape of new players from different industries.

That’s the conclusion of a recent report on the state of 5G by international management consulting firm Arthur D Little.

The report claims that for the first time, mobile operators have the chance to offer more than mere connectivity to companies with the jump to 5G. “We expect 5G to support the strategic shift of telecom operators from being predominantly providers of high-speed connectivity, to becoming true enablers of next-generation ecosystems,” it says.

As the report points out, 5G is already beginning to take shape through various global pilot schemes and testbeds. In particular, it identifies five distinct 5G rollout models that are already being used by operators around the world:

  • Gigabit broadband to residential homes (also known as Fixed Wireless Access)
  • Next-generation mobile experiences such as virtual reality and tactile internet (eg. solving physical problems remotely in real time over a wireless connection)
  • Providing reliable, low-latency connectivity for corporations
  • Digital industrial ecosystems with machine-to-machine connectivity
  • Next-generation infrastructure-as-a-service for the country

Outside threats

However, besides this massive opportunity to expand their influence, mobile operators need to be wary of new threats from other industries. There are non-telecom players that are are already active in the 5G-enabled product space, running pilots in such related fields as autonomous driving and virtual reality infotainment services.

Perhaps the biggest threats to telecoms companies are giant tech companies like Google, Apple and Amazon. These major players are heavily active in the Internet of Things, which is expected to be both a major beneficiary and driver of 5G. It would be a logical step for such cash-rich companies to launch 5G-based solutions of their own in order to help support their IoT initiatives.

The report therefore concludes that “Telecom operators should move quickly to place their stakes in the 5G ground”. It then lists a range of concrete steps that they can take now to achieve this.

These steps include building an application ecosystem with start-ups and service providers, preparing the spectrum and infrastructure for 5G (such as the hundreds of thousands of small cells that will be required), ensuring physical networks are ‘fiberised’ so that they can assist in aggregating and backhauling 5G traffic, preparing their computer systems to handle this gigabit traffic, and finally by “cloudifying the core” to enable easy scale-up and external partnerships.

Source: Jon Mundy- 5g.co.uk