5G technology doesn’t just promise an increase in bandwidth to mobile network users. It can be a revolution that will blow up the world of IoT and generate endless new use cases by making all objects of common use interactive and controllable. In 2019, the first commercial services were launched, for the time being quite conventional.
5G technology is designed to support a wide range of innovative services and to enable use cases previously incompatible with the mobile network. This second article from Bip will show some examples of applications which may come out in the next years.
The examples would be countless, here we want to show some examples, referring mainly to Enterprise market.
In the field of consumer services, 5G promises bandwidth increases to users up to 10 times than allowed by the current LTE Advanced: beyond the use of 4k streaming directly from mobile devices, the applications considered most interesting deal with AR/VR and the mobile gaming world.
The global mobile gaming market which, according to NewZoo, brought revenues of almost 70 billion dollars in 2020, could benefit from the ability of 5G to enable cloud computing to bring games, even in very high resolution AR/VR, on any device, even inexpensive one, and with a substantial saving in battery life because all processing would be carried out in the cloud.
As we saw in the previous paper, 5G is a technology designed specifically for IoT applications.
It’ worth to note 2/3 of the 122 active experiments in Italy, including the most recent one in Genoa, are in the IoT field: most projects concern remote monitoring, smart cities and agriculture (35%). Other interesting areas are: security and video surveillance projects (16%), connected cars (9%), the improvement of connectivity (2%) and autonomous driving (2%).
The availability of very low latency and very high availability profiles (uRLCC), even in combination with the opportunity of having the computing power close to the network (MEC) opens up to applications in critical sectors. Among many examples, we can mention:
Connected driving: refers to autonomous or assisted driving systems based on direct interaction with other vehicles or road infrastructure. As proof of the strong value of these solutions, it should be understood that 5G coverage of the main road axes will be the recipient of part funds of the Next Generation EU Plan reserved to Italy.
Public event monitoring and security: The NFL has launched a project to modernize and make its stadiums safer by introducing thermal scanning technologies, facial recognition accesses and queue control together with high throughput connectivity in the arena.
Mobile Private Networks (MPN)
Mobile Private Networks are one of the most interesting Enterprise applications of 5G-related technologies. The long-term objective is to replace both LAN and geographic private networks in all areas, eliminating the fixed networks and related infrastructure and investment costs.
The main purpose, at present, is the establishment of OT networks, mainly for large outdoor areas such as ports, airports or large production facilities. Also to be noted is the use in open and crowded public areas (the afore mentioned example of NFL stadiums) where on one hand 5G effectively responds to the need for a very high connection density and on the other hand it is possible to use over-6-Ghz radio since it could be easy to arrange antennas in order to have direct visibility towards users.
Moreover, 5G connections may be an alternative to providing backup lines, and in many cases also primary, to WAN connections, integrating with SDWAN solutions for efficient bandwidth management.
The coverage of office environments, due to the high throughputs required, will have to wait for the millimeter waves solutions, which however will still require additional infrastructure and so a comparative evaluation of costs compared to private wireless solutions such as those in WIFI6 technology will be needed.
A shareable infrastructure
The technologies on which 5G is based, including virtualization that enables all network capabilities to be realized in the public cloud, greatly reduce the costs and permits the scaling down of the solution. So 5G is opening up to the creation of wireless networks with components entirely managed by the enterprise and operated on a shared infrastructure.
Among the various implementation options are:
- Network Slicing: You can take advantage of this 5G capability to reserve both physical and radio network resources for a particular Enterprise. Enterprise can implement and control specific services based on a shared infrastructure.
- Private 5G Core: The enterprise builds its own core network in order to develop and full control its services, using Operator’s antennas and Access Network.
- Private network: The network is entirely owned by the company and it uses radio frequencies assigned to it. It should be noted that the allocation of spectrum to private individuals differs considerably at Country level: in Italy it is now being studied after having been excluded in the first Auction; in the UK it has recently been granted and in Germany is instead permitted from the beginning and currently tested. In the latter case more than 80 companies are currently involved, mainly for making industrial OT communication networks in large production plants.
The previous examples show that 5G is not only a new and more powerful connectivity technology but offers several development opportunities to a wide ecosystem made up of multiple actors, including:
- active players in the retail market and app developers who will be able to take advantage of the potential of ultra-broadband, including AR/VR and 4/8K;
- mobile operators which, by providing IoT platforms “as a service”and offering Mobile Private Networks, will be able to enhance their offering towards the Enterprise market;
- Enterprises companies that, on one hand will be able to take advantage of new IoT services, limiting investments and making new use cases technically and economically feasible and, on the other hand, will be able to exploit the new sharing infrastructure opportunities to build their own private networks, optimizing the degree of control over infrastructure and services.
Bip xTech and 5G
xTech is a center of excellence of the Bip Group, with a long history in defining strategies, service analysis, design and governance of TLC solutions.
The new use cases that 5G will enable at the level of private networks, OT and IoTsolutions, end-customer services will have to be analyzed taking into account business objectives, the rapidly changing market and technology landscapes, and keeping an eye out for the opportunity to valorize corporate assets.
We are, as always, alongside our customers to help them leverage the opportunities offered by 5G, also thanks to our strong skills in Artificial Intelligence and Cloud, which will increasingly merge with transmission technologies to revolutionize the range of services and companies’ organization.
If you are interested in learning more about our offer or would like to have a conversation with one of our experts, please send an email to [email protected] with “5G technology” as subject, and you will be contacted promptly.
 Our first article 5G: A new era for telecommunications (part 1) – Bip xTech talked about 5G innovative technological features
 +1 GB/S speed of download for the Verizon service ultraWideband:
 As explained in the previous paper, these frequencies offer the best performance but require that there are no obstacles between terminals and antennas.