While previous generations of cellular technology (like 4G LTE) aimed to ensure connectivity, 5G technology takes connectivity to the next level by delivering connected cloud experiences to customers. 5G networks are virtualized, run by software, and use cloud technologies.
The 5G network will also simplify mobility and provide seamless open roaming capabilities between cellular access and WiFi. Mobile users can stay connected while roaming outside of wireless connections and wireless networks within the facility without user intervention or re-authentication.
The new WiFi 6 standard (also known as 802.11ax) shares 5G technology characteristics, including better performance. WiFi 6 radios can be placed where users need them for better geographic coverage and lower costs. Behind the WiFi 6 radios is a software-based network with advanced automation.
5G technology should improve connectivity in underserved rural areas and cities where demand may exceed 4G technology’s current capacity. The new 5G networks will also have a dense, distributed access architecture, bringing computing closer to the edge and faster computing users.
5G technology offers advantages for the entire network architecture. The new 5G radio, the global standard for a higher capacity 5G radio air interface, covers spectra that 4G does not use. The new antennas will contain the technology known as MIMO (Multiple Input, Multiple Output) in large quantities so that multiple transmitters and receivers can transmit more data simultaneously. However, 5G technology is not partial to the new radio spectrum. It is designed to support a heterogeneous and converged network combining licensed and unlicensed wireless technologies. This increases the bandwidth available to users.
5G architectures are software-definite platforms where Software will manage network functionality rather than hardware. Advances in virtualization, cloud-based technologies, and IT and business process automation enable the 5G architecture to be agile and flexible, offering users access anytime, anywhere. 5G networks can create software-defined subnet constructions called network segments. These segments allow network administrators to determine network functionality based on users and devices.
5G is also improving digital experiences thanks to automation with machine learning (ML). The requirement for split-second response times (for example, for cars on autopilot) requires 5G networks to use automation with ML and, ultimately, in-depth knowledge and artificial intelligence (AI). Automated provisioning and proactive management of traffic and services reduce infrastructure costs and improve the connection experience.
The 5G service is already available in some regions of different countries. These first-generation 5G services are known as non-autonomous 5G (5G NSA). This technology is a 5G radio based on the existing 4G LTE network infrastructure. 5G NSA is faster than 4G LTE. However, the high-speed, low-latency 5G technology that the industry has focused on is standalone 5G (5G SA). It should be available from 2020 and reach maximum availability from 2022.
5G technology will usher in a new era of increased network speed and performance and create new connected experiences for users.
In the healthcare sector, 5G technology and WiFi 6 connectivity make it possible to monitor patients through connected devices that continuously generate data on key health indicators such as heart rate and blood pressure. In the automotive sector, 5G technology collective with ML algorithms provides information on traffic, accidents, etc. Vehicles can share data and with people on the streets, e.g., traffic lights, exchange. These are just two applications in the [5G technology] industry that can provide a better and safer user experience.
Cisco is bringing this automatic, software-built cloud-to-client network to 5G. The Cisco ONE architecture is the first software-defined architecture in the cloud that seamlessly extends enterprise and service provider delivery. This includes open roaming between cellular and WiFi 6 (also known as 802.11ax), which shares several attributes with 5G architecture.
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