We wanted to share some specific 5G insights with you. The question for Wholesale Roaming teams might be:
1. Will our networks be ready for 5G by 2020?
2. Will we be able to have 5G Roaming and test and open 5G Roaming with Docomo by 2020 in time for the Olympics?!
YRP Nobi seems an unlikely place to make technology history. The seaside town two hours from Tokyo is host to Yokosuka Research Park, where Japan is making its bid to win the 5G race. It is here that NTT DoCoMo’s 5G Lab is running what is almost certainly the world’s biggest 5G indoor trial.
The Japanese government has set the goal of bringing 5G to the world in time for the Tokyo Olympics in July 2020 — a high-profile target that is not just about creating an Olympics moment but is also about dealing Japan Inc. back into global telecoms.
For this reason pressure is being felt most by NTT DoCoMo Inc. (NYSE: DCM), the dominant player in Japanese mobile. To hit the 2020 target, it has signed on eight vendors as 5G partners. Along with global heavyweights Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. , Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC), it has also teamed up with local firms Fujitsu Ltd. (Tokyo: 6702; London: FUJ; OTC: FJTSY), Mitsubishi Corp. and NEC Corp. (Tokyo: 6701).
For all the intricacies of 5G, players are right now heavily focused on one thing — the radio propagation.
“That’s the most complex part,” says Takehiro Nakamura, managing director of the 5G Laboratory. With 5G, radio access technology enters the unknown territory of millimeter-wave bands, possibly as high as 100GHz.
“No-one knows what the propagation characteristics are in the higher spectrum bands,”
At high frequencies even the human body could be an impediment to propagation. In lower-band spectrum, the signal will go around the body, but no-one is quite sure how high frequency radio will behave when confronted with homo sapiens. Then there are the traditional problems like rain, trees and the angle of arrival (AoA), which also need to be dealt with.
- In April 2008, NASA partnered with Geoff Brown and Machine-to-Machine Intelligence (M2Mi) Corp to develop 5G communications technology
- In 2008, the South Korean IT R&D program of “5G mobile communication systems based on beam-division multiple access and relays with group cooperation” was formed.
- On 8 October 2012, the UK’s University of Surrey secured £35M for a new 5G research centre, joint funded between the British government’s UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF) and a consortium of key international mobile operators and infrastructure providers –including Huawei, Samsung, Telefonica Europe, Fujitsu Laboratories Europe, Rohde & Schwarz, and Aircom International– it will offer testing facilities to mobile operators keen to develop a mobile standard that uses less energy and radio spectrum whilst delivering faster than current 4G speeds, with aspirations for the new technology to be ready within a decade.
- On 1 November 2012, the EU project “Mobile and wireless communications Enablers for the Twenty-twenty Information Society” (METIS) starts its activity towards the definition of 5G. METIS intends to ensure an early global consensus on these systems. In this sense, METIS will play an important role of building consensus among other external major stakeholders prior to global standardization activities. This will be done by initiating and addressing work in relevant global fora (e.g. ITU-R), as well as in national and regional regulatory bodies.
- Also on November 2012, the iJOIN EU project was launched, focusing on “small cell” technology, which is of key importance for taking advantage of limited and strategic resources, such as the radio wave spectrum. According to Günther Oettinger, the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society (2014–19), “an innovative utilization of spectrum” is one of the key factors at the heart of 5G success. Oettinger further described it as “the essential resource for the wireless connectivity of which 5G will be the main driver”. iJOIN was selected by the European Commission as one of the pioneering 5G research projects to showcase early results on this technology at the Mobile World Congress 2015 (Barcelona, Spain).
- In June 2014, the EU research project CROWD was selected by the European Commission to join the group of “early 5G precursor projects”. These projects contribute to the early showcasing of potential technologies for the future ubiquitous, ultra-high bandwidth “5G” infrastructure. CROWD was included in the list of demonstrations at the European Conference on Networks and Communications (EuCNC) organized by the EC in June 2014 (Italy).
- In February 2013, ITU-R Working Party 5D (WP 5D) started two study items: (1) Study on IMT Vision for 2020 and beyond, and; (2) Study on future technology trends for terrestrial IMT systems. Both aiming at having a better understanding of future technical aspects of mobile communications towards the definition of the next generation mobile.
- On 12 May 2013, Samsung Electronics stated that they have developed the world’s first “5G” system. The core technology has a maximum speed of tens of Gbit/s (gigabits per second). In testing, the transfer speeds for the “5G” network sent data at 1.056 Gbit/s to a distance of up to 2 kilometres.with the use of an 8*8 MIMO.
- In July 2013, India and Israel have agreed to work jointly on development of fifth generation (5G) telecom technologies.
On 1 October 2013, NTT (Nippon Telegraph and Telephone), the same company to launch world first 5G network in Japan, wins Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications Award at CEATEC for 5G R&D efforts.
- On 6 November 2013, Huawei announced plans to invest a minimum of $600 million into R&D for next generation 5G networks capable of speeds 100 times faster than modern LTE networks.
- On 8 May 2014, NTT DoCoMo start testing 5G mobile networks with Alcatel Lucent, Ericsson, Fujitsu, NEC, Nokia and Samsung.
- At the end of September 2014, Dresden university inaugurates a 5G laboratory in partnership with Vodafone.
- On October 2014, the research project TIGRE5-CM (Integrated technologies for management and operation of 5G networks) is launched with the aim to design an architecture for future generation mobile networks, based on the SDN (Software Defined Networking) paradigm. IMDEA Networks Institute is the project coordinator.
- In November 2014, it was announced that Megafon and Huawei will be developing a 5G network in Russia. A pilot network will be available by the end of 2017, just in time for the 2018 World Cup.
- On 19 November 2014, Huawei and SingTel announced the signing of a MoU to launch a joint 5G innovation programme.
- On 28 April 2015, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced Turkey might cancel 4G tender and move straight to 5G from 3G directly in two years.
Source: BBC Click, Light Reading, Wikipedia