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SDN: Core of 5G

Apr 18, 2016

Pitt discusses the emergence of 5G and what SDNs role will be in its deployment.  

SDN 5G PuzzleThe next frontier of mobile is approaching with operators gearing up to deploy 5G mobile connectivity, and SDN will play a key role in unlocking its full capabilities. In my recent Light Reading article, I go into further detail of how SDN will propel 5G forward. Below is an excerpt from the article. To read the full piece, click here.

The excitement around 5G is understandable. Not simply a next-generation mobile service, 5G is emerging as an end-to-end system that will enable a fully mobile, connected society and support a wide range of use cases, including:

    • High-capacity, high-performance outdoor and indoor broadband access in dense urban areas, with mobile broadband everywhere;
    • Ultra-reliable and lifeline communication;
    • Extreme real-time communication to support delay-sensitive applications, including video, Internet of Things (IoT), machine-type communication, vehicle-to-X communications, e-health applications (such as remote surgery), hyperscale sensor networks, and industrial control and safety mechanisms, including control of electrical grids, traffic, self-driving cars, and "smart city" management; and
    • Entertainment, virtual reality and other new user experiences.

Just as high-speed Internet connectivity and smartphones have caused disruptive changes -- for example, in content production and consumption -- 5G will disrupt various industries, including telecom, automotive, healthcare, government, utilities, manufacturing and transportation.

5G will launch a new ecosystem of providers and open up opportunities to create completely new business models. It will also change the way carrier networks are designed. Technologies such as compute virtualization, SDN and NFV are fundamental to 5G. Indeed, without SDN the promise of 5G would remain unfulfilled.

My full article offers examples of implications of 5G’s aggressive performance goals and discusses how SDN will specifically drive 5G. Read it all on Light Reading.

- Dan Pitt, Executive Director

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