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the Light Reading Big 5G Event in Denver – May 2019


Why 5G 

“5G’s promise of lightning-fast throughput and low latency”

5G is poised to be disruptive and woven into all fabrics of society 

Verizon’s Nicki Palmer summed it up during her keynote at the Big 5G Event this month. 

She believes that within the next three years, connected devices could reach three times the world’s population. 

The current 4G LTE networks can’t scale to support that onslaught of connectivity – 5G can.

Jason Proctor from CBC news in Canada summarises the 5G narrative quite well.

It is estimated that by 2020 between 50 billion and 100 billion devices worldwide are expected to be connected to the internet with the ability to communicate seamlessly with no latency. (Lag between sending and receiving).

5G will have enough bandwidth to revolutionise entertainment, health care and education – it will enable the “Internet of Things” , Virtual Reality or Augmented Reality.

Uses will include self-driving cars, remote-controlled thermostats and drones — connected to the internet.

Our devices will be able to communicate directly with each other, essentially cutting humans out of the equation.

The players at the conference included

  • Ian Campbell, CTO for Cisco Systems’ 
  • Mishka Dehghan, Sprint’s executive lead for 5G services 
  • Nicki Palmer, Verizon’s Chief Networking Officer, highlighted location-based services, 
  • Huawei CTO Paul Scanlan and Joy Tan, who leads corporate communications for the company

All shared their excitement and benefits of 5 G which included 

  • roaming, 
  • Internet download speeds multiple times faster, 
  • I o T – communication with many more devices at once, 
  • the ability to send and receive information closer to real time than ever before.
  • Households will be altered through inter-connectivity of equipment, 
  • Industries made more timely and cost-effective, 
  • the economy from banking to shopping will be transformed
  • improved stadium connectivity/
  • back office support, and 
  • factory automation.
  • network slicing, 
  • virtualization, 
  • cloudification, 
  • the leverage of open APIs.
  • Smart City implementation – transport and city management will be revolutionised – improving public safety,
  • Driverless cars with 5G making possible the superfast sending of precision data between vehicles so that they do not collide and they can communicate with road sensors and traffic lights and surveillance drones.
  • Systems will alert police when accidents occur, traffic moves smoothly through integrated signals that keep track of flows, and emergency vehicles arrive as quickly as possible through not being held up by red lights.
  • distance learning. 
  • gaming, and 
  • healthcare – example – long-distance surgery with robots, a surgeon implanting a stimulation device into the brain of a Parkinson’s disease patient in Beijing using robotic arms controlled from about 3,000km away.

The importance of security of networks

Security of networks to keep them safe from hackers will be no different with 5G than the present 4G. 

Systems and equipment, no matter who makes them or where they are from, will need to be constantly checked and monitored and improved.

 Given the importance of 5G to the future, governments and companies need to share and cooperate.

Mr. Scanlan’s response to the concerns that  Huawei may share subscriber data with the Chinese government. 

He pointed out that data ownership and management resides with carriers, not equipment providers, who are bound by privacy laws within each particular region of the world. 

A tour of the Huawei’s Independent Cybersecurity Lab in Shenzhen revealed  over 240 international security certifications and a multi-layered internal audit protocol for discovering “backdoors” and vetoing product launches independently of its consumer, carrier, and enterprise business units (with documented stops and product cancellations in the past). 

Huawei is working hard to allay the concerns of the rest of the world with not only its cybersecurity lab but also by inviting the media to tour its headquarters. 

These efforts could be paying off given Huawei started in the telecommunications industry over 30 years ago and in a relatively short amount of time built a $50B consumer business. 

This was led by impressive smartphone designs with an emphasis on professional-like camera capabilities and in parallel has created an enterprise switch and router business approaching $10B and growing at an impressive clip.

Bottom line – 5G is coming and Australia should be riding this wave with Huawei 

Posted on May 14, 2019

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