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Case Study: Operators collaborate to drive mission-critical services globally using 5G

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The Challenge

BT and Verizon have been researching the power of technologies like virtualization, edge cloud computing and federated network slicing as key enablers for the next generation of services to ensure high quality of service excellence.

Previous generations of mobile technology have not been capable of supporting certain kinds of mission critical communications, in particular, those that require real-time communications and specifically when operating in a different country or across different geographical locations. However, through deploying 5G radio, core and network slicing, these requirements can be met. By harnessing 5G technology, together with virtualized network functions, operators can have a deeper integration within each other’s networks by creating network slices, federated across operators, which enables ultra-low latency services to exist across countries and continents.

The solution

On February 21, 2018, BT, Verizon, King’s, Ericsson and Unmanned Life demonstrated autonomous control and management of a fleet of drones in central London, which was launched from the US by Verizon, on a dedicated 5G network slice within BT’s network. These techniques can deliver a vast array of applications, including mission critical services that require ultra-low latency and high availability to achieve real-time feedback loops that enable applications like remote operations regardless of geographical location. These applications could include advanced disaster recovery services using drones, such as delivery of equipment, medicine, food, water and blood or the rapid deployment of a temporary cellular network using drones to enable vital communications.

The demonstration, which utilized new pre- commercial 5G radio, was achieved by building a 5G core and creating two network slices with similar characteristics: one, a low latency breakout for a BT end user; the other, a Verizon low latency breakout. This advancement opens up a wide range of opportunities and makes it possible to deliver applications such as remote and/or autonomous control of drones and rovers, to real-time search and rescue applications – something that was not previously possible.

The result

BT, Verizon, Ericsson, King’s and Unmanned Life demonstrated a number of use cases at the University’s central London location. The use cases were centered around disaster response scenarios including:

Delivery of emergency kit or rescue equipment to a disaster area using drones
Search missions with HD imaging in disaster recovery zones, specifically areas of difficult access
Coordinated missions where multi drone fleets from multiple countries could be used to inspect an emergency area or perform specific tasks (e.g. load handling)
Rapid deployment of a temporary cellular network using drones, enabling vital communications for disaster recovery
These use cases were enabled by an AI driven autonomous platform provided by Unmanned Life. Together, the companies showed how emergency response teams from different countries can immediately deploy and control their drone fleets in a remote disaster zone.

These applications demonstrate that combining 5G radio, with its inherent higher bandwidth and lower latency characteristics, together with network slicing and network function virtualization, can enable operators like BT and Verizon to deliver specialized services to public and private sectors on a global basis. In addition to the use cases demonstrated, this technology can assist in other use cases including health and remote surgery applications and assisted driving or autonomous vehicles.

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After 5G equipment, Tata Group looking to enter semiconductor manufacturing

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NEW DELHI: Tata Group is looking to make a foray into semiconductor manufacturing, Chairman N Chandrasekaran said on Monday.

Pegging the market opportunity of high-tech manufacturing of electronics at USD 1 trillion, Chandrasekaran said Tata Group has already set up a business to seize the opportunity.

His remarks come days after the USD 100-billion group announced entry into 5G equipment manufacturing and a string of acquisitions to create the Tata Digital business.

Semiconductor manufacturing, which involves building chipsets among other things, requires high investments and India does not have any such facility yet.

Chandrasekaran explained that alterations to the global supply chains, which are heavily dependent on China, in the aftermath of the pandemic and geopolitical changes, will make businesses shift their reliance on other countries and called this a huge opportunity for India, which becomes the second base.

At the Tata Group, we have already pivoted into a number of new businesses like electronics manufacturing, 5G network equipment as well as semiconductors, in all probability.

On rebalancing supply chains, India can significantly benefit from the geopolitical shifts that we are seeing. At the group, we have already set up a business to seize the promise of high-tech manufacturing of electronics, precision manufacturing, assembly and testing and semiconductors in the medium term, he said while speaking at IMC Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s AGM.

He, however, did not elaborate on the exact plans on this front for the group.

Chandrasekaran said he sees four trends emerging in the post-pandemic world — rapid digital acceleration, new approach to supply chains, a re-imagination of growth with environmental sustainability at the core and inclusion of health and wellness concerns by every business.

The four themes will play into each of our own existing businesses, and they are also leading to brand new initiatives for the Tata Group, he said.

Tata Digital is building multiple platforms including a consumer offering covering retail, travel, financial services, health and education, which will target both high-frequency buys and also discretionary spends, he said.

Chandrasekaran said when it comes to environmental sustainability, businesses need to have time-bound goals, not vague and distant targets, and it is critical to invest in research and development in future growth sectors such as renewable energy which is likely to see 20 new sources of power emerging in the next two decades.

Given where India is in our development curve, we have an opportunity to address our jobs challenge through a leapfrog to a green economy, through solar installation, microgrids, sustainable cooling, and better waste management. At the Tata Group, we are looking at all of these sectors, he said.

Chandrasekaran, who took over the group chairmanship after leading its IT arm TCS, said there is a need to adopt artificial intelligence, cloud and data more aggressively, and Tata Group considers this as a top priority.

Chairman of the group, which devotes nearly all its profits to philanthropic causes, also spoke about the inequities which are being created because of the pandemic and urged for a fast-paced rollout of services to universalize education and healthcare services.

Solving such problems using digital technologies will also create employment opportunities, especially for the low skilled people, and help create a market, Chandrasekaran said, expecting them to deliver 30 million new jobs.

He said with hybrid working possibilities, a good number of the 120 million women educated till the secondary school level can get jobs, and added that this alone can add USD 440 billion to the GDP.

Source: Press Trust of India

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5G roamers to surpass 200 million by 2026

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NEW DELHI:A new Juniper Research study has found that the global number of roaming subscribers using 5G services will increase from 4.5 million in 2021 to 210 million in 2026.

As the international travel industry recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, it recommends that operators must now focus on increasing 5G roaming support to accommodate the future rise in demand for data when roaming over 5G networks.

The new research, 5G Roaming Strategies: Future Outlook, Opportunities & Market Forecasts 2021-2026, urges roaming vendors to develop 5G-enabled roaming features such as:

Roaming analytics
Sponsored roaming
Steering of roaming
These services will support the management of an increasing number of 5G roaming connections, the rise in demand for 5G roaming data, and help operators to maximise 5G roaming monetisation.

For more insights, download our free whitepaper: The Rise of the 5G Roaming Empire

5G Roaming Data to Represent 115 Million Hours of 4K Video by 2026

The report predicts that, as 5G roaming proliferates, vendor competition around the 5G-enabled roaming services mentioned above will intensify. Subscribers will expect comparable levels of bandwidth and latency when roaming over 5G to home network connectivity, and roaming vendors must accommodate this demand via value-added services.

The study projects that global roaming data traffic from 5G subscribers will increase from 2.6 PB in 2021 to 770 PB by 2026; representing enough data to stream 115 million hours of 4K video from platforms such as Netflix.

5G Technology to Necessitate Roaming Overhaul

In addition, the research found that this anticipated rise in data will necessitate the establishment of novel agreements that explicitly cover 5G roaming data, and provide roaming subscribers with comparable user experiences whilst roaming.

Research author Scarlett Woodford noted “As demand for international travel returns, operators must adjust to the significant uptake of 5G subscriptions during the pandemic. A failure to provide 5G roaming capabilities in key travel destinations will diminish brand reputation amongst subscribers and lead to churn to competitors”

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Ericsson signs $8.3 billion 5G deal with Verizon

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NEW DELHI:Ericsson said that it has signed $8.3 billion agreement with Verizon to provide its industry-leading 5G solutions to accelerate the deployment of Verizon’s world-class next-generation 5G network in the U.S.

Niklas Heuveldop, President and Head of Ericsson North America, says: “This is a significant strategic partnership for both companies and what we’re most excited about is bringing the benefits of 5G to U.S. consumers, enterprises and the public sector. We’re looking forward to working with Verizon to leverage solutions like Cloud RAN and our Street Macro, adding depth and versatility to 5G network rollouts across the U.S.”

“With this new agreement, we will be able to continue driving innovation and widespread adoption of 5G,” said Kyle Malady, Chief Technology Officer for Verizon. “We are pleased to continue this work through our long-standing relationship with Ericsson.”

Under this $8.3 billion USD agreement, Verizon will deploy Ericsson’s 5G MIMO C-band, low-band and millimeter wave (mmWave) solutions to enhance and expand Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband coverage, network performance and user experience. Ericsson’s technology solutions, including Massive MIMO, Ericsson Spectrum Sharing and Ericsson Cloud RAN, complement the high-performing Ericsson Radio System portfolio to support 5G services. Ericsson’s industry-leading software functionality provides end-users with the speed and performance they expect from 5G networks.

In 2020, Verizon was the first communications service provider to receive a commercial 5G mmWave Street Macro base station from Ericsson’s award-winning new state-of-the-art U.S. smart factory in Lewisville, Texas. Ericsson is committed to building and accelerating the nationwide build-out of 5G across the country.

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