Cellular networks should brace for a ‘tsunami of data,’ says 5G Americas
5G Americas President: ‘5G is a transformational technology that is here to stay’
There is no doubt that 5G is taking over on a global scale at a much faster rate than the generations of cellular technology before it. There is also no doubt that 5G will bring with it a host of new use cases and applications that will, according to numerous experts, change the world as we know it. From President of 5G Americas Chris Pearson’s perspective, 5G is still in its very early stages, but it might lead to a bigger transformation a lot sooner than we think, and while there is much to be gained from such a transformation, it is also important to consider the challenges as well.
“There is a total of 56 commercial 5G deployments in the world as of February 14, 2020,” Pearson told RCR Wireless, “but […] as we progress quickly and globally, we [could]reach over 1 billion 5G connections by 2023.”
Because of the amount of new device connections expected in the years to come, there has been an increasing need for improved security at every level of the “intertwined technology ecosystem,” said Pearson.
He continued, “Security has always been at the forefront of mobile communications networks. It is the immune system which keeps a cellular network and ecosystem running. 3GPP has created new 5G security standards that include enhancements for encryption, mutual authentication, integrity protection, privacy and availability.”
The goal of the new security standards is to enhance security throughout the entire network, targeting the user plane, control plane and management traffic.
“National governments, enterprise, operator infrastructure, subscriber devices and IoT connections all require protection from numerous vulnerabilities points in the cyber threat landscape,” he added. “The new multi-level approach of the 5G security mechanisms are required to protect our connected world.”
5G Americas has also been focused on exploring how 5G is changing the way that networks are deployed and managed, and last year published a white paper on management, orchestration and automation.
“Mobile networks are on the cusp of riding a tsunami of data,” offered Pearson, “which will be exploding as more 5G networks are deployed throughout the Americas and the world.”
In fact, Pearson predicted that by 2022, there will be more than 12 billion mobile-ready devices and IoT connections, and by the same year, mobile networks will support more than 8 billion personal mobile devices and 4 billion IoT connections.
This amount of data will be impossible to manage manually, and operators will need to rely on AI and machine learning to get the job done, especially when it pertains to data analytics, predictive maintenance, fraud detection, and the automation of operations processes.
“In a fully integrated network model, intelligence would be embedded across all lines of a network operator’s business, from customer care, to billing, order management, alongside all the network and device management functions and applications,” Pearson explained. “Intelligent automation would sit on top of each of these functions, providing precise real-time, dynamic, and adaptive adjustments along every stretch of the enterprise.”
In conclusion, Pearson highlighted 5G’s broad impact, stating that the technology will “greatly expand the value of mobile wireless networks,” creating a much larger role for cellular than we have previously seen.
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