Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology's Sebastien Faye underscores the value of real-time data and ongoing 5G projects to support a growing ecosystem.
Source : Delano
Publication date : 01/01/2022
What added value does 5G offer compared to older technologies?
5G is a service-oriented architecture. [In comparison], three main targets--the improvement of the [connection] speed, lower latency, and the ability to connect more devices, beyond what was possible with 4G--[stand out]. Today most connected devices are smartphones, but this will increase with several use cases that will benefit from this technology.
While previous technologies had a uniform beam for all users within a given coverage, 5G adopts an active antenna system with multiple and very precise beams directly connected to 5G devices. Another technology behind 5G is network slicing. The objective here is to create--in addition to the physical network--a set of virtual networks [slices] for low latency, output or connectivity [to support specific business needs]. Of course, it depends on the operators' commercial offers, but technically speaking, it is possible [with 5G].
Could you briefly summarise some List 5G projects?
5G-Planet is an awareness-raising platform for 5G [using] a digital replica of the country--which the public can interact with in a simulation environment--to see the impact in several scenarios. Ensuring data is managed in a secure way is an area that the 5G-Insight project targets. The 5G-Emit project, which ends in 2023, assesses electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure. As a network operator, you cannot deploy an antenna anywhere as rules [including EMF exposure limits] apply. But the compliance assessment methods in place today are not necessarily compatible with 5G.
What 5G regulations do service providers comply with?
[Well], the 4G regulations are used for 5G. But just to be clear, it's very conservative and applies the precautionary principle. [Some may think that] because the regulations are not well adapted to 5G, then the validated deployments for 5G are more dangerous. This is not the case. It's just that if we apply this same methodology to 5G, then some antennas won't be able to transmit because they are not compatible, so it's going to slow down the deployment of this technology.
Is it too late to catch up with countries like China?
I wouldn't say so. It may have taken a bit longer than in Asia, or even in the US, but today, we have the 5G infrastructure (base stations, antennas, etc.) deployed in Luxembourg and in Europe, and several funded projects at national and EU level. I think the development of new services and applications that might benefit from this infrastructure is critical. There are tons of possible applications, but not all are developed yet.
Can we estimate a timeframe for full 5G deployment, considering ongoing 6G discussions?
Probably in the next few years, but the development of applications would be very progressive. With higher frequencies, new possibilities for developing applications will open. At EU [level], one goal is to cover major roads and highways by 2025. By 2030, it will be time for 6G. In terms of business applications, I think we'd already see a lot of interesting applications and services in about five years.
What's next for businesses?
Investing [in 5G] is key for companies. List supports companies through different projects and offers them a means to test, plan and design applications [while considering crossborder deployments]. Companies should think of ways to optimise their business. I think all sectors have a lot to gain from real-time data.