FCC Grants Facebook permission to test converged WiFi/LTE indoor network in Menlo Park, CA

Following last month’s FCC filing to test a small 5G network, Facebook has filed another FCC Special Temporary Authority (STA) petition to test a “converged wireless system” that could potentially support concurrent communications across Wi-Fi and cellular networks in Menlo Park, CA (Facebook corporate headquarters).

In its FCC filing (granted June 23,2021), Facebook said “The experiment involves short-term testing of a LTE over-the-air setup for an indoor demonstration that is not likely to last more than six months, making an STA more appropriate than a conventional experimental license.”

Also, that it is researching a “proof of concept for a converged wireless system that will operate at the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi band and at Band 3 (1710MHz to 2495 MHz). The goal of the proof of concept is to create a demonstration and see if such a system may be viable. The system that will be tested will have a simple radio head that will be able to operate as a Wi-Fi Radio at 2.4 GHz and as a Band 3 cellular radio (LTE) concurrently. We will wirelessly connect dedicated client devices to demonstrate performance.”

The FCC approved Facebook’s request on June 23,2021.  It will remain in effect until its scheduled expiration date of November 10, 2021.  Facebook petition was filed under the “FCL Tech” name, which the company has been used for previous wireless tests in the 6GHz band.

Facebook will be using five units of unspecified AVX wireless network gear (E 102289 model).  AVX is a Kyocera Group company.   Their website states:

AVX Corporation is a leading international manufacturer and supplier of advanced electronic components and interconnect, sensor, control and antenna solutions with 33 manufacturing facilities in 16 countries around the world.

We offer a broad range of devices including capacitors, resistors, filters, couplers, sensors, controls, circuit protection devices, connectors and antennas. AVX components can be found in many electronic devices and systems worldwide.

Since WiFi at 2.4 GHz is in unlicensed spectrum (and being used indoors), one would assume that Facebook would also like to operate LTE in unlicensed spectrum in their converged network.

LTE in unlicensed spectrum (LTE-Unlicensed, LTE-U) is a proposed extension of the 4G-LTE wireless standard intended to allow cellular network operators to offload some of their data traffic by accessing the unlicensed 5 GHz frequency band. LTE-Unlicensed is a proposal, originally developed by Qualcomm, for the use of the 4G LTE radio communications technology in unlicensed spectrum, such as the 5 GHz band used by IEEE 802.11a and 802.11ac compliant Wi-Fi equipment. It would serve as an alternative to carrier-owned Wi-Fi hotspots. Currently, there are a number of variants of LTE operation in the unlicensed band, namely LTE-U, License Assisted Access (LAA), and MulteFire.

License Assisted Access (LAA) is a feature of LTE that leverages the unlicensed 5 GHz band in combination with licensed spectrum to increase performance. It uses carrier aggregation in the downlink to combine LTE in unlicensed 5 GHz band with LTE in the licensed band to provide better data rates and a better user experience.

However, Facebook’s STA is only for the band between 1710-2495 MHz – not the 5 GHz band.

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References:

https://apps.fcc.gov/oetcf/els/reports/GetApplicationInfo.cfm?id_file_num=0769-EX-ST-2021

https://apps.fcc.gov/oetcf/els/reports/STA_Print.cfm?mode=current&application_seq=107558

https://www.lightreading.com/aiautomation/facebook-hints-at-mysterious-converged-wireless-system-in-test-application/d/d-id/770458?

Facebook to test 5G small cell network with SON features; Combine 5G access with Terragraph wireless backhaul?

 

Linux Foundation creates standards for voice technology with many partners

The Linux Foundation is teaming up with Target, Microsoft, Veritone and other companies (see below) to create the Open Voice Network [1.], an initiative designed to “prioritize trust and standards” in voice-focused technology.

Note 1.  The Open Voice Network is a central hub for creating and promoting common standards for voice assistants. The ultimate goal is a comprehensive set of guidelines and standards for everything about voice AI and voice assistants, including customer privacy and security.

The Linux Foundation is working with Target, Schwarz Gruppe, Wegmans Food Markets, Microsoft, Veritone, and Deutsche Telekom as the initial members. All of the members anticipate voice becoming the most common digital interface in the near future, and the Open Voice Network is how they plan to meet that moment. Each is committing money and other resources to create the standards, sharing them with others in the industry, and advocating on behalf of groups and companies that are using voice tech.

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“Voice is expected to be a primary interface to the digital world, connecting users to billions of sites, smart environments and AI bots. It is already increasingly being used beyond smart speakers to include applications in automobiles, smartphones and home electronics devices of all types. Key to enabling enterprise adoption of these capabilities and consumer comfort and familiarity is the implementation of open standards,” Linux Foundation senior vice president and general manager of projects Mike Dolan, said in a statement. “The potential impact of voice on industries including commerce, transportation, healthcare and entertainment is staggering, and we’re excited to bring it under the open governance model of the Linux Foundation to grow the community and pave a way forward.”

Jon Stine, executive director of the Open Voice Network, told ZDNet that the rapid growth of both the availability and adoption of voice assistance worldwide — and the future potential of voice as an interface and data source in an artificial intelligence-driven world — makes it important for certain standards to be communally developed.

Devices and applications are increasingly incorporating voice activation and navigation functions. Mike Dolan, senior vice president at the Linux Foundation, said the network was a “proactive response to combating deep fakes in AI-based voice technology.”

“Voice is expected to be a primary interface to the digital world, connecting users to billions of sites, smart environments and AI bots. It is already increasingly being used beyond smart speakers to include applications in automobiles, smartphones and home electronics devices of all types. Key to enabling enterprise adoption of these capabilities and consumer comfort and familiarity is the implementation of open standards,” Dolan said, adding that the organization was “excited to bring it under the open governance model of the Linux Foundation to grow the community and pave a way forward.”

The nonprofit said the open-source association would be dedicated to promoting open standards that support the adoption of AI-enabled voice assistance systems.

In addition to Target, Microsoft and Veritone, the Linux Foundation said it is working with Schwarz Gruppe, Wegmans Food Markets and Deutsche Telekom.

Ryan Steelberg, president and co-founder of Veritone, said self-regulation of synthetic voice content creation and used to protect the voice owner as well as establishing trust with the consumer is “foundational.”

“Having an open network through the Open Voice Network for education and global standards is the only way to keep pace with the rate of innovation and demand for influencer marketing,” Steelberg said. “Veritone’s MARVEL.ai, a Voice as a Service solution, is proud to partner with OVN on building the best practices to protect the voice brands we work with across sports, media and entertainment.”

Thousands of companies and organizations have created voice assistant systems independent of today’s general-purpose voice platforms as a way to streamline services and improve user experience.

Linux Foundation representatives said the Open Voice Network would support the platforms by “delivering standards and usage guidelines for voice assistant systems that are trustworthy, inclusive and open.” The organization will also provide guidance on voice-specific protection of user privacy and data security and ways to make voice assistants interoperable between platforms.

“To speak is human, and voice is rapidly becoming the primary interaction modality between users and their devices and services at home and work,” said Ali Dalloul, a general manager at Microsoft Azure.

“The more devices and services can interact openly and safely with one another, the more value we unlock for consumers and businesses across a wide spectrum of use cases, such as Conversational AI for customer service and commerce.”

The Linux Foundation compared the effort to the open standards that were introduced in the earliest days of the internet, noting that those initiatives helped create uniform ways for websites to connect and exchange information.

Voice assistants are now reliant on a variety of technologies, including Automatic Speech Recognition, Natural Language Processing, Advanced Dialog Management and machine learning.

Steelberg added that voice technologies and interfaces would be fully integrated into the majority of digital applications, devices, and workflows in five years. As this voice proliferation and adoption increases, he noted that it is imperative that organizations like the Open Voice Network and other participating voice tech providers and developers continue to stay diligent on consumer and data protection, as well as protecting the trademark, copyright and uses of peoples’ voices.

Voice technology began to emerge around 2011 with the introduction of Siri to iPhone users, according to Steelberg. Now, he said 1 in every 4 US adults owns some kind of smart speaker, and studies have shown that almost all smartphone users will be using some form of voice assistant within the next two years.

Stine added that data from January shows there are about 3 billion active conversational agents worldwide, and the number is expected to jump to 8.4 billion by 2024.

“The number of IoT devices such as smart thermostats, appliances, and speakers are giving voice assistants more utility in a connected user’s life,” Steelberg said.

“Smart speakers are the number one way we are seeing voice being used. However, it only starts there. Many industry experts even predict that nearly every application will integrate voice technology in some way in the next five years.”

Comment on Smart Speakers: After many years with Amazon Echo (since 2015) and Google (since 2020) smart speakers, I can STRONGLY state that their voice recognition skills have gotten much worse to the point that they can’t be used.  I disabled the Alexa/Echo capability to control my AMAZON Fire TV and disconnected other Echo devices which were completely dysfunctional.  I also disconnected the 2nd Google smart speaker because the results of voice inquiries/commands were totally wrong!

References:

https://linuxfoundation.org/press-release/linux-foundation-introduces-open-voice-network-to-prioritize-trust-and-interoperability-in-a-voice-based-digital-future/

https://www.zdnet.com/article/linux-foundation-partners-with-microsoft-and-target-to-create-standards-for-voice-technology/

Linux Foundation Launches Open Voice Network to Set Voice Tech Standards

5G Made in India: Bharti Airtel and Tata Group partner to implement 5G in India

On June 21st, Bharti Airtel and Tata Group announced a strategic partnership for implementing 5G network solutions for India.  A 5G pilot should start in January 2022, unless it’s delayed by India’s Department of Telecommunications (DoT).

The announcement underscores a push for indigenous made 5G solutions in India.  Despite tremendous hype, the world’s second-largest telecom market has not yet launched commercial 5G service.

Airtel’s partnership with Tata Group allows the telecom operator to take head-on, rival Reliance Jio’s so called “homegrown 5G solutions.”   Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio is accelerating the rollout of digital platforms and indigenously-developed next-generation 5G stack.

According to a statement, Tata Group has developed O-RAN (Open Radio Access Network) based radios and 5G NSA/SA (Non-Standalone=4G-LTE/Standalone) Core and has integrated a totally indigenous telecom stack, leveraging the Group capabilities and that of its partners.

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) brings its global system integration expertise and helps align the end-to-end solution to both 3GPP and O-RAN standards, as the network and equipment are increasingly embedded into software,” the Tata statement added.

Airtel will pilot and deploy this indigenous solution as part of its 5G rollout plans in India, with a pilot beginning in January 2022, as per the norms formulated by the government.

Gopal Vittal, Managing Director & CEO (India and South Asia) Bharti Airtel said, “We are delighted to join forces with the Tata Group to make India a global hub for 5G and allied technologies. With its world-class technology ecosystem and talent pool, India is well positioned to build cutting edge solutions and applications for the world. This will also provide a massive boost to India becoming an innovation and manufacturing destination.”

N Ganapathy Subramaniam from the Tata group/TCS said, “As a group, we are excited about the opportunity presented by 5G and adjacent possibilities. We are committed to building a world-class networking equipment and solutions business to address these opportunities in the networking space. We are pleased to have Airtel as our customer in this initiative.” 

Airtel is a board member of the O-RAN Alliance and is committed to explore and implement O-RAN-based networks in India. Earlier this year, Airtel became the first telecom company in India to demonstrate 5G over its LIVE network in the city of Hyderabad. The company has started 5G trials in major cities using spectrum allocated by the Department of Telecom.

The Tata group’s telecom and media enterprises cater to the communication requirements of global business houses to SMEs, and from wholesale to home networks. TCS is a member of the O-RAN Alliance.

About Airtel: 

Headquartered in India, Airtel is a global communications solutions provider with over 471 mn customers in 18 countries across South Asia and Africa. The company ranks amongst the top three mobile operators globally and its networks cover over two billion people. Airtel is India’s largest integrated communications solutions provider and the second-largest mobile operator in Africa. Airtel’s retail portfolio includes high-speed 4G/4.5G mobile broadband, Airtel Xstream Fiber that promises speeds up to 1 Gbps with convergence across linear and on-demand entertainment, streaming services spanning music and video, digital payments, and financial services. For enterprise customers, Airtel offers a gamut of solutions that includes secure connectivity, cloud and data centre services, cybersecurity, IoT, Ad Tech, and cloud-based communication. For more details visit www.airtel.com 

About the Tata Group:

Founded by Jamsetji Tata in 1868, the Tata group is a global enterprise, headquartered in India, comprising 30 companies across ten verticals. The group operates in more than 100 countries across six continents, with a mission ‘To improve the quality of life of the communities we serve globally, through long-term stakeholder value creation based on Leadership with Trust’.

Tata Sons is the principal investment holding company and promoter of Tata companies. Sixty-six percent of the equity share capital of Tata Sons is held by philanthropic trusts, which support education, health, livelihood generation, and art and culture. In 2019-20, the revenue of Tata companies, taken together, was $106 billion (INR 7.5 trillion). These companies collectively employ over 750,000 people.

Each Tata company or enterprise operates independently under the guidance and supervision of its own board of directors. There are 29 publicly-listed Tata enterprises with a combined market capitalization of $123 billion (INR 9.3 trillion) as of March 31, 2020. Companies include Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Tata Chemicals, Tata Consumer Products, Titan, Tata Capital, Tata Power, Tata Advanced Systems, Indian Hotels, and Tata Communications.

For more details visit www.tata.com

For more information, please contact:  Harsha Ramachandra [email protected]

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References:

https://www.tata.com/newsroom/business/tata-airtel-5g

https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/business/airtel-tata-group-team-up-for-made-in-india-5g-network-solutions-271955

https://www.greaterkashmir.com/todays-paper/airtel-tata-grouptcs-announce-collaboration-for-made-in-india-5g

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June 25, 2021 Update Reliance Jio partners with Google Cloud for “5G edge enabled services”
India’s leading mobile operator, Reliance Jio, is teaming up with Google Cloud to deliver 5G services to consumers and enterprises. The operator will make use of the cloud giant’s distributed infrastructure to deliver its services and the two companies will team up to offer edge-enabled 5G services to Indian enterprise users. In addition, Google and Jio shared more details around their jointly developed made-for-India smartphone called JioPhone Next. And as part of a broader deal, the Reliance Group’s retail divisions will use Google’s cloud platforms to improve efficiency and gain scale. For further details, see this announcement.

Oxymoron: 3GPP approves (?) Ligado’s L-Band Spectrum for 5G Private Networks

Overview:

Ligado Networks today announced it received approvals from Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) for new technical specifications that will enable its L-band spectrum [1.] to be deployed in 5G networks.

Note 1. L band is the IEEE designation for the range of frequencies in the radio spectrum from 1 to 2 gigahertz (GHz).  The Global Positioning System carriers are in the L band, centered at 1176.45 MHz (L5), 1227.60 MHz (L2), 1381.05 MHz (L3), and 1575.42 MHz (L1) frequencies. L band waves are used for GPS units because they are able to penetrate clouds, fog, rain, storms, and vegetation.

Since World War II, radar systems engineers have used letter designations as a short notation for describing the frequency band of operation. This usage has continued throughout the years and is now an accepted practice of radar engineers.

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Why is 3GPP “approval” of L-Band an oxymoron?  Because 3GPP specifications have no legal standing and must be transposed by SDOs (like ETSI and ITU-R) before they become de jure standards.  The best example of that were the 3GPP RIT/SRIT submissions to ITU-R WP5D which became the main part of ITU-R M.2150 (previously referred to as IMT 2020 Radio Access Network).

From the 3GPP website under the heading Official Publications:

The 3GPP Technical Specifications and Technical Reports have, in themselves, no legal standing. They only become “official” when transposed into corresponding publications of the Partner Organizations (or the national / regional standards body acting as publisher for the Partner). At this point, the specifications are referred to as UMTS within ETSI and FOMA within ARIB/TTC.

Some TRs (mainly those with numbers of the form xx.8xx) are not intended for publication, but are retained as internal working documents of 3GPP. Once a Release is frozen (see definition in 3GPP TR 21.900), its specifications are published by the Partners.

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How Frequencies get standardized for International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT):

IMT frequencies for 3G, 4G, 5G are agreed upon once every four years at the ITU-R WRC.  The last one was WRC 19 in Egypt in October 2019.  After that, they are sent to ITU-R WP5D for detailed IMT terrestrial frequency arrangements, which are then included in a revision of ITU-R M.1036 – Frequency Arrangements for Terrestrial IMT.  Once that M.1036 revision is approved, it is rubber stamped by ITU-R SG5 which meets once per year in November.

As of the close of last week’s WP5D meeting, there was no consensus on approving the WRC 19 specified mmW frequencies to be used with IMT 2150.   Hence, the revision of M.1036 to include 5G frequencies has not been approved yet.  One WP 5D meeting left to get that done this year prior to SG 5 meeting this November.

Ligado or the ITU-R 3GPP representative (currently ATIS) would have to submit their L-Band frequencies to WP 5D before their October 2021 meeting to get it approved as a frequency band to be used for M.2150 (the official one and only 5G RAN standard).

The closest M.1036 frequencies in the L band are 1.427-1.518 GHz and 1.710-2.200 GHz.  Both bands use paired FDD arrangements to separate transmit and receive channels.

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Ligado wants to expand the L-Band vendor ecosystem and deploy new mid-band spectrum in 5G networks in the U.S. Ligado is currently developing a 5G Mobile Private Network Solution designed to bring the power of next-generation networks to the energy, manufacturing, health care, transportation, and other critical infrastructure sectors.

“This is a major milestone for us – in an already momentous year – and advances our vision to deploy this spectrum for a range of next-generation services,” said Ligado CEO Doug Smith. “The 3GPP green light gives us what we need to accelerate our commercial ecosystem activities and expand Ligado’s roster of partners to deploy this much-needed spectrum for U.S. businesses and consumers.”

3GPP approvals (?) of Band 24 (1.5 GHz and 1.6 GHz) may encourage vendors to build PRE-STANDARD 5G and LTE products compatible with Ligado’s mid-band spectrum. Ligado has already entered into commercial agreements with multiple 5G base station and chipset vendors. The company has also announced a collaboration with pioneering network operator Rakuten Mobile to showcase its 5G Mobile Private Network Solution, and the companies plan to deploy lab and field trials over the next 12 months.

The items that were approved at this week’s 3GPP plenary meeting include updates to Ligado’s existing LTE Band 24 (1.5 GHz and 1.6 GHz); a new 5G NR Band labeled n24; a new 5G NR Supplemental Uplink (SUL) Band labeled n99; and NR Carrier Aggregation (CA) and SUL band combinations for n24 and n99 with CBRS, C-Band and EBS/BRS spectrum. The approvals of SUL band n99 and band combinations will help facilitate the deployments of L-Band spectrum with other mid-band airwaves like the C-Band, CBRS, and EBS spectrum bands.

“Receiving these 3GPP approvals is a huge springboard to deploy the L-Band in U.S. 5G networks, and we’re excited to have continued support from several industry-leading vendors,” said Chief Technology Officer Maqbool Aliani. “Bringing this additional mid-band spectrum to the 5G market will help the U.S. roll out next-generation deployments more quickly, at lower costs, and with superior network performance.”

Ligado submitted these work items to 3GPP in June 2020 after winning unanimous, bipartisan approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to modify its existing spectrum license. In October 2020, the company announced it had successfully raised nearly $4 billion to develop and deploy the L-Band in 5G networks.

For years, it’s been rumored that Ligado wanted to sell its spectrum to the highest bidder, probably a wireless carrier desiring mid-band 5G spectrum. While that hasn’t happened, some still see it as a valuable resource for the Verizon or AT&T.  If T-Mobile or Dish acquired the L-band, they would extend their advantage even further, according to New Street Research analyst Jonathan Chaplin in a September 2020 report.

“The final major step for Ligado will involve getting chipset and radio vendors to incorporate the L-Band into their designs, paving the way for a carrier to deploy the L-Band on towers and small cells and to sell devices that contain L-Band-supporting chipsets,” Chaplin wrote in a report for investors today. “This final leg of the process is likely to take some time, but could be accelerated by the support of a large industry player (one of the carriers), who can more easily encourage their vendors to integrate the spectrum into their equipment.”

Also, several analysts believe that the demand for private wireless networking equipment could eventually double the market for public wireless networks.

About Ligado Networks:

Building on 25 years of experience providing crucial satellite connectivity, Ligado’s mission is to modernize American businesses by delivering the 5G connectivity solutions needed to transform their operations and realize the efficiencies of a digital world. Our plans to deploy licensed mid-band spectrum in public and private 5G networks will help pave the way for future innovations and economic growth across America.

For further information:

Ligado Networks Media Contact:
Ashley Durmer, Chief Communications Officer and Head of Congressional Affairs
Tel: 703-390-2008
[email protected]

References:

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/3gpp-approves-band-specifications-of-ligados-l-band-spectrum-for-5g-deployment-301316320.html

https://www.fiercewireless.com/private-wireless/ligado-obtains-3gpp-approvals-for-l-band-5g

https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/29086

Busting a Myth: 3GPP Roadmap to true 5G (IMT 2020) vs AT&T “standards-based 5G” in Austin, TX

Samsung Looks to Europe to Expand Network Equipment Business; vRAN is the key

Samsung Electronics is focusing on Europe to retain its accelerating growth in the network equipment business. Even though Samsung Electronics is number one in memory chips and smartphones, it is behind Huawei, Ericsson, Nokia and ZTE in the 5G network equipment market.

Samsung Electronics had a 6 to 8% global telecom equipment market share as of the first quarter of 2021, according to Dell’Oro Group’s latest report.  The company is just below Cisco (the world’s dominant router maker) and slightly ahead of Ciena (optical network market leader) to be ranked sixth over all in global telecom equipment revenues.  Samsung is likely #5 in 5G RAN revenues, behind Huawei, Ericsson, Nokia and ZTE, but its 5G market share can not be determined at this time.

Since Samsung landed a $6.65 billion 5G infrastructure deal with Verizon and another huge deal with Japan’s NTT Docomo, its 5G network equipment business has been on an upward sales trajectory.

Samsung is taking extra steps and expanding its range of 5G trials in Europe. Currently, Samsung is conducting 5G trials with European telecom companies such as Deutsche Telekom in the Czech Republic, Play Communications in Poland, and other undisclosed European carriers.

Samsung recently won a big contract with Vodafone to supply the big European network operator with their cloud native virtualized RAN.  That will be deployed in an Open RAN environment with other vendors (see below). Samsung says that it has been continuously leading in vRAN innovation, most recently showing the capability to support the multi-gigabit speeds of Massive MIMO radios on commercial off the shelf (COTS) servers.

“We are proud that this collaboration with Vodafone — one of the premier carriers in the world — will be the first scaled deployment of our pioneering 5G technologies in Europe, including vRAN and O-RAN,” said Paul Kyungwhoon Cheun, president and head of Networks Business at Samsung Electronics, in a statement. “This is a major step forward, as more operators are transitioning into new RAN technologies to prioritize user experience and efficiency.”

Vodafone’s initial focus will be on the 2,500 sites in the UK that it committed to open RAN in October 2020. According to Vodafone, it’s one of the largest deployments in the world and will be built jointly with Dell, NEC, Samsung and Wind River.

Asia, Oceana and India:

Samsung is also looking to expand in markets such as Southeast Asia, Australia and India. The South Korean giant said it has gained multiple new clients for its 5G equipment and systems which have increased by nearly 35% a year on average.

Samsung’s 5G vRAN kit debuted in July, adding a virtualized distributed unit (vDU) to its virtualized central unit (vCU) so the entire baseband is virtualized, along with a range of radio units.  Samsung is Verizon’s 5G RAN vendor in parts of upstate New York and New England, a Verizon spokesperson confirmed.  This is depicted in the illustration below:

Block Diagram of Samsung’s vRAN 

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Contrary to a recent Reuters article, there are no 5G stand alone/5G core networks in South Korea. Rather, South Korean telecom operators currently provide 5G services via nonstandalone 5G networks, which depend on previous 4G-LTE networks which do NOT have a virtualized core (the 4G core network is called Evolved Packet Core).

The country’s three operators (SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus) launched 5G service in April 2019.  5G NSA networks are available mostly in large Korean cities.  Their 5G RANs are based on 3GPP Release 15 version of 5G-NR.  In April 2021, the three operators agreed to share their 5G networks in 131 remote locations across the country, Yonhap news agency reported

Samsung’s network equipment business is relatively small for the conglomerate.  It had revenue of 236.8 trillion South Korean Won ($212.50 billion) for 2020. The company does not announce separate numbers for the business and most analysts don’t have estimates for it.

Samsung said since the 5G network rollouts began in 2019 in various countries, it has seen the number of new clients for its 5G equipment and systems rise by 35% a year on average.

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Huawei, ZTE and other Chinese telecom gear vendors have faced backlash for various security and privacy issues. Since the U.S. has excluded Huawei from 5G rollouts, it has provided multiple opportunities to competitors to expand its market share. Many Central and Eastern European countries, including Romania, Poland, the Czech Republic and the Baltic states, have been broadly receptive to American arguments against Huawei.

Samsung is capitalizing on its virtualized RAN technology that allows telecom companies to freely use off-the-shelf network equipment in various combinations to connect users to networks.  This is how the company plans to win 5G contracts that might otherwise have been awarded to Chinese telecom vendors, especially Huawei.  For example, Verizon says they’ve already adopted Samsung’s vRAN technology for their 5G RAN.

Samsung’s goal is to become top-three in the 5G network equipment business, Woojune Kim, executive vice president of Samsung’s networks business told Reuters. However, Kim did not give a timeframe, citing the industry’s long incubation time period.  “It took us about a decade to win the Verizon deal, since forming early relationships… It takes persistence,” he said.

Therefore, the period to achieve the #3 goal is still unknown.  It might depend on Huawei’s revenue collapsing due to sanctions and Samsung moving ahead of ZTE to claim the #3 position behind Ericsson and Nokia.

References:
https://techblog.comsoc.org/2021/06/15/delloro-group-telecom-equipment-market-advances-top-7-vendors-control-80-of-the-market/

Passive Optical Network (PON) technologies moving to 10G and 25G

A Variety of PON Technologies to Chose From:

Passive Optical Network (PON) technology is changing, moving from older GPON’s 2.5Gbit/s and 1.25Gbit/s data rates to XGS-PON’s maximum 10Gbit/s symmetric speeds and technologies such as NGPON2 and  25G PON (described at the end of this article).

“We didn’t see a lot of adoption of the XG, XGS-PON and 10G EPONs (Ethernet PONs) particularly because of cost within these networks, but what we have started seeing is the next generation or the NG-PON2 that uses time wave division multiplexing,” said Jason Morris, marketing manager at Corning Optical Communications during a webinar sponsored by Light Reading.  Using up to eight wavelengths to create multiple transmission channels on a single strand of fiber “you can actually get up to 80G with this technology with channel bonding,” he added.

Rich Loveland, director of product management at Vecima Networks, pointed to explosive growth in fiber optic development, spurred by government broadband stimulus funding and connections to MDUs. In these broadband upgrade projects, “you don’t have to put PON in for it, but most are choosing it they are unserved anyway. It’s primarily a greenfield-type of operation.”

Among telcos, the choices are expanding beyond older GPON technology toward more advanced standards such as XGS-PON, which is “starting to come up quite a bit now over some of the NG-PON2 types of technologies,” Loveland said. “They are developing 25G. The ITU-T is defining 50G single-wavelength, and NG-PON2 seems to be adopted by one major operator right now.”

One year ago, AT&T deployed XGS-PON as per this IEEE Techblog post.  It went live in 40 markets AT&T serves.

For most cable operators, it’s not realistic to replace all their coax access network with fiber, said Jorge Figueroa, manager of PON Solutions at Harmonic. Instead, he pointed to cloud-native platforms to provide a better migration path to PON fiber, with lower-cost, off-the-shelf programmable hardware that can manage DOCSIS or PON architectures simultaneously.

“Distributed Access Architecture allows us to go fiber-deeper, and by doing that we can provide Gigabit symmetric feeds by going maybe to DOCSIS 4.0,” he said. “The goal here is to squeeze the most out of that HFC, while at the same time giving us an easy transition to PON.”

Viavi has seen providers move from 1Gbit/s to 10Gbit/s services, with new builds favoring newer transmission schemes such as XGS-PON or 10G EPON options, said Douglas Clague, solutions marketing manager at Viavi.

A live Light Reading webinar poll indicates operators are exploring different PON upgrade options. With the ability to choose more than one option, about 29.9% said they were deploying next-generation PON technologies, while 18.2% said their companies were opting to go fiber-deep and an equal number were looking to deploy FTTP.  About 15.6% were implementing DAA, while 13% were expecting to deploy DOCSIS 4.0 and 5.2% were moving to network virtualization.

In a IEEE Techblog post last week, Dell’Oro analyst Jeff Heynen said:

“The shift to 10 Gbps PON technologies is happening quickly and on a global basis,” noted Jeff Heynen, Vice President, Broadband Access and Home Networking at Dell’Oro Group. “The only thing preventing further expansions are supply chain constraints and increased costs,” Heynen explained.
“You can see the trajectory. It’s very clear that operators, if they’re deploying new fiber networks, in a lot of cases they’re doing so starting off with 10-gig. And even those that are beginning the process of upgrading from the first-generation GPON technologies they’re also doing so with XGS,” Heynen said. “This trend was accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.
“I think what has happened among operators, particularly in North America, is that they’re starting to realize that if we deploy more fiber and we do so with multi-gigabit capabilities then we’re putting ourselves in a position to anticipate and at least already be competitive with that DOCSIS 4.0 rollout.”
In a follow up email, Jeff wrote: “a number of these XGS-PON deployments are to replace legacy P2P Ethernet networks.”
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25G PON Developments:
25G PON deployments are a bit further in the future. Last October, Nokia  established the 25GS_PON MSA Group to bring together optical network operators along with leading system and component vendors, to promote and accelerate the development and deployment of 25 Gigabit Symmetrical Passive Optical Network (25GS-PON) technology.
The group seeks to develop the technical specification, strengthen the eco-system and promote market development of symmetrical 25G PON technology ahead of standards authorization by the ITU-T.
Last month we reported that Nokia and Proximus (Belgium) demonstrated the first implementation of 25GS-PON. Operating over existing fiber with Nokia equipment deployed in the Proximus network, the first ever 25G PON live network connects the Havenhuis building in the Port of Antwerp with the Proximus central office in the middle of the city. The network speed exceeded 20 Gbps, making it the fastest fiber network in the world.
Rupert Wood, Research Director for Fiber Networks at Analysys Mason, said: “Today’s 25G PON achievement demonstrates the unlimited potential of fiber. This next evolution in fiber technology will provide enterprises with greater than 10 Gbs connectivity and the capacity needed to support 5G transport along with future next generation services such as massive scale Virtual Reality and real time digital twins.”

References:

https://www.lightreading.com/cable-tech/cable-players-are-taking-many-paths-to-pon-/d/d-id/770345?

Dell’Oro: Broadband Access equipment spending increased 18% YoY

https://www.cablelabs.com/tag/10g-25g-50g-pon

https://www.lightreading.com/opticalip/fttx/why-10gig-is-right-pon-play-today/a/d-id/768061?

AT&T, six others join industry push for 25G PON technology

Nokia and Proximus (Belgium) demonstrate 1st implementation of 25GS-PON

AT&T deploys XGS-PON to power FTTH nets

 

 

Posted in PON

Ciena demo’s 45 wavelengths @400G; Joins Google’s Cloud’s 5G/Edge ISV Program

During OFC 2021 last week, Ciena and Lumenisity Ltd.  said that they had partnered to demonstrate transmission of 45 wavelengths, each at 400G, over 1,000 km of hollowcore fiber cable.

The demonstration paired Lumenisity’s CoreSmart hollowcore cable with Ciena’s WaveLogic 5 Extreme and Nano coherent optical engines, with the transmission occurring in a recirculating loop. The companies say their work indicates that hollowcore fiber cable can be used for high-bandwidth, long-reach applications such as data center interconnect (DCI) in addition to edge and 5G xHaul applications Lumenisity had previously cited (see Lumenisity, BT drive 400ZR DWDM transmission over hollowcore fiber and BT testing hollowcore fiber for 5G support).

Lumenisty said that it has been working over the past six months with ecosystem partners to test the CoreSmart low-latency hollowcore cable in its System Lab in Romsey, UK (see Startup Lumenisity unveils hollowcore fiber cables for DWDM applications, new funding” for more on Lumenisity’s fiber). Ciena participated in at least some of those exercises, including a second trial in which the two companies achieved a capacity of 38.4 Tbps with 48x800G channels over greater than 20 km without in line amplification using the current generation of CoreSmart. Lumenisity says the next generation of CoreSmart will be able to extend reach in such an application to between 50-100 km with no inline amplification when paired with the WaveLogic 5 Extreme.

“The results obtained both internally and with Ciena commercial WaveLogic 5 systems show further evidence that we are bringing our world-class hollowcore fiber cable technology to market at an accelerating rate for multiple high-capacity applications, that solve real world latency issues for our customers,” commented Tony Pearson, business development director at Lumenisity.

“System characterization results of WaveLogic 5 Extreme programmable 800G and WaveLogic 5 Nano 400ZR coherent pluggables running over CoreSmart show promising results with hollowcore fiber now proven to preserve high-capacity while materially reducing latency,” added Steve Alexander, senior vice president and CTO of Ciena. “We are proud to be at the forefront of this breakthrough technological achievement where we can enable a 50% increase in reach for latency-sensitive data center interconnects.”

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Separately, CTO Alexander wrote a blog titled, “Ciena has joined Google Cloud’s 5G/Edge ISV Program to help enterprises accelerate migration of their IT resources to the cloud

Here’s an excerpt:

To facilitate the migration of enterprise IT workloads to the cloud, there is a requirement for higher speed connections from the enterprise edge to cloud provider that are scalable with enhanced security to best protect critical business data. Shared IP network connections to the cloud are acceptable for lower speed (10Gb/s) connections and below. However, when secure, higher speed connections are required to the cloud, connectivity via the IP network can become overly complex, expensive, and inefficient when compared to the optical network (Optical Fast Lane) that can provide a more efficient, cost-effective, and secure option for enterprises needing to reduce their workload migration times to support their evolving business objectives.

For the multi-cloud market to succeed, it must reduce the friction for enterprises to migrate their workloads to a cloud provider, as well as between cloud providers – on demand. This is analogous to the days when you had a mobile plan with one carrier, and to switch to another carrier, you had to switch mobile numbers, which was too complex for most customers, so they stuck with their existing carrier. Only when consumers could keep their phone number when they switched carriers (through Local Number Portability), did it make the mobile market truly competitive leading to improved choice, pricing, and innovation. This is what we’re trying to achieve in the multi-cloud market.

Google Cloud is one of the leading cloud providers in the market that embraces an architecture that enables their enterprise customers to gracefully migrate their workloads to Google Cloud via an Optical Fast Lane that enables Enterprise to develop and leverage the Google Cloud for new and innovative applications. Ciena is excited to be a key player in this program and in addressing this opportunity in the industry. This builds off Ciena’s long standing relationship with Google and other Cloud Providers serving both private and managed high-capacity optical transport networks – principally dominated by subsea, long-haul, metro and DCI connectivity.

Ciena is also a major supplier to Communication Service Providers (CSPs) and MSOs – serving all segments of the network – including high-speed access connectivity for Enterprises as well as cell-site routing and backhaul. In partnership with CSPs, Google Cloud is helping customers leverage their edge real-estate assets to facilitate low latency connectivity to Google Cloud and reduce the friction required for enterprises to improve their mean time to the cloud for their data and workloads.

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References:

https://www.lightwaveonline.com/optical-tech/transmission/article/14205460/lumenisity-ciena-demonstrate-45x400g-coherent-channels-over-1000-km-of-hollowcore-fiber-cable

https://www.ciena.com/insights/articles/ciena-has-joined-google-clouds-5gedge-isv-program-to-help-enterprises-accelerate-migration-of-their-it-resources-to-the-cloud.html

Highlights of Ericsson’s Mobility report: 4G still on top, but 5G (mostly NSA) growing rapidly

According to Ericsson’s latest Mobility Report, the 5G market is growing by around 1 million subscriptions per day. China, North America and the Gulf Cooperation Council markets are leading the way on subscriber numbers, while Europe is off to a slow start.

The world added around 70 million 5G subscribers in the first quarter of 2021, putting it on track to reach 580 million by the end of this year, Ericsson announced. The high growth rate confirms that 5G will be the fastest adopted mobile generation in history.

However, 5G deployed to date is almost 100% 5G NSA (Non Stand Alone), requiring an LTE anchor. That makes it like “4G on steroids,” according to Stephane Teral of Light Counting. Stephane says there are only eight 5G SA networks (T-Mobile US has one) deployed to date.  Only those 5G SA networks can realize the true features/functions of 5G because they have a 5G Core network with associated functions (However, they’re implemented differently by each 5G SA service provider, although Rakuten Mobile wants to change that with its RCS platform).

5G is expected to surpass a billion subscriptions two years ahead of the 4G LTE timeline for the same milestone. This is due mainly to China’s early commitment to 5G and quicker availability of affordable 5G devices.

Average data usage to reach 35 GB/month in 2026:

In the medium term, Ericsson forecasts 5G to grow to 3.5 billion subscriptions in 2026, when coverage should reach around 60 percent of the world’s population. The expansion of 5G will drive strong growth in mobile data traffic as well, which is expected to grow nearly five-fold, from 49 EB per month at the end of 2020 to 237 EB per month in 2026. Average smartphone usage is expected to rise over the same period from 10 GB per user per month to 35 GB.

The data forecast excludes fixed-wireless access, although this element is proving core to 5G offerings. According to the report, almost nine in ten operators that have launched 5G also have a fixed wireless access offering (4G and/or 5G), even in markets with high fiber penetration. FWA traffic is forecast to grow by a factor of seven to reach 64 EB in 2026.

5G Communications Service Providers at the forefront of Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) adoption:

The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating digitalization and increasing the importance of – and the need for – reliable, high-speed mobile broadband connectivity. According to the latest report, almost nine out of ten communications service providers (CSPs) that have launched 5G also have a fixed wireless access (FWA) offering (4G and/or 5G), even in markets with high fiber penetration. This is needed to accommodate increasing FWA traffic, which the report forecasts to grow by a factor of seven to reach 64 EB in 2026.

Massive IoT on the rise:

Massive IoT technology (NB-IoT and Cat-M) connections are forecast to increase by almost 80 percent during 2021, reaching almost 330 million connections. In 2026, these technologies are forecast to comprise 46 percent of all cellular IoT connections.

Excerpts from the report:

Despite the uncertainty caused by COVID-19, service providers continue to switch on 5G and more than 160 have launched commercial 5G services.1 5G subscriptions with a 5G-capable device grew by 70 million during the first quarter, to reach around 290 million.

We estimate close to 580 million 5G subscriptions2 by the end of 2021. Currently, North East Asia has the highest 5G subscription penetration, followed by North America, Gulf Cooperation Council countries and Western Europe. In 2026, it is projected that North America will have the highest share of 5G subscriptions of all regions at 84 percent.

5G subscription uptake is expected to be faster than that of 4G following its launch in 2009. 5G subscriptions are estimated to reach 1 billion 2 years earlier than 4G.

 

Key factors include China’s earlier engagement with 5G compared to 4G, as well as the timely availability of devices from several vendors. By the end of 2026, we forecast 3.5 billion 5G subscriptions globally, accounting for around 40 percent of all mobile subscriptions at that time.

4G will remain the dominant mobile access technology by subscription over the forecast period. During Q1 2021, 4G subscriptions increased by approximately 100 million, exceeding 4.6 billion, equaling 58 percent of all mobile subscriptions. It is projected to peak during the year at 4.8 billion subscriptions before declining to around 3.9 billion subscriptions by the end of 2026 as more subscribers migrate to 5G.

The net addition of mobile subscriptions was quite low during Q1 2021, at 59 million. This is likely due to the pandemic and associated lockdown restrictions. India had the most net additions (+26 million), followed by China (+6 million) and Nigeria (+3 million).

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Stephane Teral’s favorite chart:

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References:

https://www.ericsson.com/en/mobility-report

https://www.ericsson.com/en/press-releases/2021/6/ericsson-mobility-report-more-than-half-a-billion-5g-subscriptions-by-the-end-of-2021

https://www.ericsson.com/49cd40/assets/local/mobility-report/documents/2021/june-2021-ericsson-mobility-report.pdf

 

Development of “IMT Vision for 2030 and beyond” from ITU-R WP 5D

Introduction:

No organization, standards or spec writing body have detailed anything real related to “6G.”  All the 6G claims from telecom equipment vendors and network operators are pure propaganda/hype. There is no consensus of what 6G will be, nor is there any effort to standardize “5G Advanced.”  Hence, there is no basis whatsoever to talk about standardized 5G Advanced or 6G anytime soon.

Yes, we know 3GPP is working on Release 18 which will have many new features and functions, but their Release 16 (frozen one year ago) is not complete– at least not for the URLLC 5G NR specification and performance testing.  Don’t talk about “5G Advanced” or “6G” if the key use case (URLLC) for 5G is not complete.  Nor is the implementation specified for “5G core” or 5G advanced functions, e.g. network slicing, as we’ve stated many, many times.

This article examines what’s real: the important ongoing work by ITU-R (the official standards body for cellular communications and frequencies) on the vision, goals and objectives for what may become 6G.  Or maybe not?

ITU-R WP 5D Efforts on IMT Vision for 2030 (which will include “6G”):

ITU-R Working Party 5D (WP 5D) has started to develop a new draft Recommendation “IMT Vision for 2030 and beyond” at their March 2021 meeting. This Recommendation might be helpful to drive the industries and administrations to encourage further development of IMT for 2030 and beyond.

This Recommendation will define the framework and overall objectives of the future development of IMT for 2030 and beyond, including the role that IMT could play to better serve the needs of the future society, for both developed and developing countries.

For the development of this draft new Recommendation, WP 5D would like to invite the views of External Organizations on the IMT Vision for 2030 and beyond, including but not limited to, user and application trends, evolution of IMT, usage scenario, capabilities and framework and objectives.

WP 5D will also develop a new draft Report ITU-R M.[IMT.FUTURE TECHNOLOGY TRENDS] which focuses on the following aspects:

This Report provides a broad view of future technical aspects of terrestrial IMT systems considering the time frame up to 2030 and beyond. It includes information on technical and operational characteristics of terrestrial IMT systems, including the evolution of IMT through advances in technology and spectrally-efficient techniques, and their deployment.”

For the development of these reports, WP 5D invites the views of External Organizations on future technology trends for terrestrial IMT systems, including but not limited to the motivation on driving factors such as new use cases, applications, capabilities, technology trends and enablers. These technical inputs are intended for the timeframe towards 2030 and beyond and are proposed to be significantly advanced and different from that of IMT-2020.

Related documents: ITU Recommendations, Reports, Documents and Handbook:

Recommendation ITU-R M.1645 – Framework and overall objectives of the future development of IMT‑2000 and systems beyond IMT‑2000

Recommendation ITU-R M.2083 – IMT Vision – “Framework and overall objectives of the future development of IMT for 2020 and beyond”

Recommendation ITU-R M.1457 – Detailed specifications of the terrestrial radio interfaces of International Mobile Telecommunications-2000 (IMT-2000)

Recommendation ITU-R M.2012 – Detailed specifications of the terrestrial radio interfaces of International Mobile Telecommunications Advanced (IMT-Advanced)

Recommendation ITU-R M.2150 – Detailed specifications of the terrestrial radio interfaces of International Mobile Telecommunications-2020 (IMT-2020)

Report ITU-R M.2243 – Assessment of the global mobile broadband deployments and forecasts for International Mobile Telecommunications

Report ITU-R M.2320 – Future technology trends of terrestrial IMT systems

Report ITU-R M.2370 – IMT Traffic estimates for the years 2020 to 2030

Report ITU-R M.2376 – Technical feasibility of IMT in bands above 6 GHz

Report ITU-R M.2134 – Requirements related to technical performance for IMT‑Advanced radio interface(s)

Report ITU-R M.2410 – Minimum requirements related to technical performance for IMT-2020 radio interface(s)

Report ITU-R M.2441 – Emerging usage of the terrestrial component of International Mobile Telecommunication (IMT)

Report ITU-R M.[IMT.FUTURE TECHNOLOGY TRENDS TOWARDS 2030 AND BEYOND] – Future technology trends of terrestrial IMT systems towards 2030 and beyond

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Key objectives of the Vision towards IMT for 2030 and beyond:

  • Focus on continued need for increased coverage, increased capacity and extremally high user data rates;

  • Focus on continued need for lower latency and both high and low speed of movement of the mobile terminals;

  • Fully support the development of a Ubiquitous Intelligent Mobile Society;

  • Focus on tackling societal challenges identified in UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular to meet the needs of Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure;

  • Consider what the future heterogenous mobile broadband networks can offer to the society and the economy through the applications and services they support;

  • Target the changing global scenario on how we work and how we stay safe during the societal challenges such COVID-19 pandemic and global climate changes;

  • Focus on delivering on digital inclusion and connecting the rural and remote communities.

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The 4 key pillars for the vision:

  1. Any future technology should help in the development of a Ubiquitous Intelligent Mobile Connected Society (whatever that means is TBD).

  2. Any future technology should support technologies that can help bridge the digital divide.

  3. Any future technology should support technologies that can Personalize / localize services.

  4. Any future technology should support the connectivity / compute technologies that can address issues of real-world data ownership sensitivities.

Brief text for each of the pillars is as below:

1.  Development of a Ubiquitous Intelligent Mobile Connected Society:

It is anticipated that Public / Private / Enterprise networks, specialized networks (application / vertical specific), IOT / sensor networks will increase in numbers in the coming years and could be based on multiple radio access technologies. Interoperability is one of the most significant challenges to enable a ubiquitous intelligent, connected / compute environment, where different networks, processes, applications, use cases and organizations are connected. This includes supporting very high bandwidth requirements applications such as holographic communications, digital twins etc to supporting extremely low bandwidth requirement use cases such as sensors.

2.  Support technologies that can bridge the digital divide: It is a very important considerations for any future technology development.

Future networks / technologies should support affordability as a key parameter and to that end support technologies such as:

      1. Highly composable networks /architectures to address issues of cost and affordability.

      2. Dynamic Spectrum Sharing technologies which can lower the cost of initial spectrum purchase.

      3. Heterogeneous device types to bring the cost of affordability down without compromising high end usage scenarios.

      4. Energy efficiency to enable affordability and sustainability.

3.  Support technologies that can Personalize /localize services.

As home network capabilities, edge device / network capabilities are enhanced, there is an opportunity to personalize services like never before. It’s important that personalization (focused on individuals, homes, apartments small / medium enterprises) services is a key focus area.

4.  Support technologies that can mimic real world data ownerships and hierarchies.

Personal data protection is becoming important and as nations are focused on data protection and management it is important that any future network / technology takes into account the intrinsic data hierarchies and management aspects. Data ownership granularity spans from personal data, enterprise or group data, organizational data, data considered as national assets (data that is not allowed to leave the geographic boundaries)

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External Organizations will be invited to contribute to this work item via contributions to future ITU-R WP 5D meetings in 2021 and 2022.

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Source:  ITU-R WP 5D

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Addendum from Leo Lehmann, Chairman ITU-T SG13:

ITU-T had run Focus Group Network-2030, which was concluded in July 2020. This Focus Group studied the capabilities of networks for the year 2030 and beyond. Those networks are expected to support novel forward-looking scenarios, such as holographic type communications, extremely fast response in critical situations and high-precision communication demands of emerging market verticals.

It has produced a remarkable “White Paper: “Network 2030 – A Blueprint of Technology, Applications and Market Drivers Towards the Year 2030 and Beyond(May 2019).”

Even though studies are focusing only on “non-radio-related” aspects, the given use cases might be very important for the further discussion how they might be supported by corresponding spectrum requirements (whatever “G”).

References:

https://www.itu.int/en/ITU-T/focusgroups/net2030/Pages/default.aspx

https://www.itu.int/en/ITU-T/focusgroups/net2030/Documents/White_Paper.pdf

2021 Optical Fiber Conference (OFC) Highlights and Links to Videos

The premier event in optical telecom—the 2021 Optical Fiber Communication Conference and Exhibition (OFC) concluded last week. The virtual event drew over 6,500 registrants from 83 countries.

“OFC 2021 saw technology announcements and technical presentations spanning the optical communications ecosystem, including advancements in optoelectronic devices, packaging and digital signal processing that are all rapidly evolving to achieve 800G and beyond, as well as those in architectures and algorithms towards more intelligent optical networking,” said Jun-ichi Kani, OFC General Chair, NTT, Japan. “OFC is the only event where attendees can access the full spectrum of trends shaping the industry and the way we connect across the globe.”

Speakers presented breakthroughs in many areas, including 400/ZR+, 800G, co-packaged optics, embedded optics, next-gen optical access, silicon photonics, space-division multiplexing, data center networks, automation and intelligence in networks and more. Sessions on quantum science and technologies, sensor applications and free space optics appealed to a large audience and enriched the OFC experience. Recorded sessions are available to registrants as on-demand content for 60 days following the close of the event.

“OFC is the go-to event for the optics industry,” said Jimmy Yu, vice president, Dell’Oro Group. “From the thought-provoking panel discussions to the product announcements, OFC has always been the place where I learn about emerging technologies.”

Technology experts from global leaders II-VI, Broadcom, Ciena, Cisco, Corning, Innolight, Intel, Juniper Networks, Lumentum, NeoPhotonics, Nokia and Ribbon discussed developments in hardware and software-based networking solutions in daily briefings with leading analysts, Sterling Perrin, Heavy Reading; Ian Redpath, OMDIA; Andrew Schmitt, Cignal AI; Jimmy Yu, Dell’Oro Group and Vladimir Kozlov, LightCounting. The videos can be viewed here.

The TIP sub-group said multi-vendor integration and services operations “were achieved through open standard models and APIs supported by the Optical SDN Controller, including Transport-API, OpenConfig and Open REST.”

“This proof of concept is an important milestone in the journey to fully open and disaggregated optical networking. It offers new levels of visibility and a way to manage the entire multi-vendor environment,” commented Christoph Glingener, CTO at ADVA.

Technology Showcases from 3M, AIM Photonics, Corning, EFFECT Photonics, Infinera, Jabil, Juniper Networks, Keysight Technologies, Lumentum, Luna Innovations, Murata, Nokia, Pi, Renesas, Ribbon, Samtec, Sicoya, Synopsys, Tektronix, Telescent and Xilinx gave deep dives into their cutting-edge products.

OFC 2021 exhibitor news announcements are posted to the OFC Newsroom.

Innovations in Optics
Leading researchers from around the world presented technical peer-reviewed papers, including:

Post Deadline Papers looked to the future with developments in high-speed individual LEDs, modulated lasers, record low loss in hollow core fibers for applications in power delivery and sensing and other topic areas important to industry.

Analysts also revealed their recent findings around the sector to coincide with the event. For instance, Cignal AI suggested there have been strong gains in switching and routing spending by operators in the first quarter of the year, but these were offset by the slightly weaker deployment of optical transport gear.

Scott Wilkinson, lead analyst for transport hardware at Cignal AI, noted that “Chinese spending on optical hardware has plateaued as major 5G network builds mature and new projects have not been initiated.”  He added that the country’s “extraordinary growth during 2015 to 2018 could not continue long term due to the impracticality of expanding upon the enormous amounts that had been spent in the region.”

In general, analysts reported subdued activity by Chinese operators across all product categories after last year’s strong growth, while most other territories showed a rebound this quarter.

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OFC 2022 will be held 06 – 10 March at the San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, CA.

For more information contact: [email protected]

References:

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ofc-2021-concludes-as-global-leaders-and-industry-powerhouses-reveal-trends-shaping-optical-fiber-communications-301312906.html

https://www.ofcconference.org/en-us/home/

https://www.eetindia.co.in/ofc-highlights-open-optical-nets/