Private 5G refers to a mobile network service for deploying, operating, and scaling private cellular networks on premises with integrated hardware and software. Private 5G can deliver low latency and high bandwidth connections supporting AI-driven applications serving an exploding number of sensors and endpoints. This article presents a general point of view around all the hype in private 5G. .
This article was originally published by ASOCS.
ASOCS is disrupting the industrial network connectivity market with an open and virtualized software solution that delivers 5G private mobile network solutions in a single software stack.
Even AWS Notices Private 5G
December 2021 Amazon Web Services (AWS) unveils at Invent 2021 AWS Private 5G thrusting Private 5G into the spotlight that only a household name like Amazon can do.
The real news is not that AWS has discovered a new market (ASOCS has been focused on this since the announcements of 5G) – it is the fact that demand for Private 5G has matured into a market that makes Amazon sit up and take notice.
The demand from the market has risen because of a convergence of needs, the technology, the application, security concerns and the business models, most prominent in Industry 4.0 as enterprises strive towards Smart Manufacturing.
The Peculiarity of 5G
For much of the public, 5G is just a faster technology for communications and networks. What sets 5G apart from all the previous generations is that 5G is predominantly software with a googol of variable parameters. That is 10 to the power of 100 variables as opposed to 10,000 on LTE (5G’s predecessor) and 20 on 2G. The uniqueness of 5G takes the network away from a hardware-centric technology to IT software.
In practice, this means that everything between the device and radio to the server is completely virtualized and managed. You can control what devices can connect, tier the devices for bandwidth preference, set the ratio between upload and download speed, all at incredible speeds. You can take a standard camera and connect it in real-time to AI applications. This level of control and reliability is unique to 5G.
At the same time, Governments started allocating Spectrum for private use.
At ASOCS, as soon as we saw the specifications for 5G it was obvious that this was going to be a game-changer for enterprises’ connectivity. Anywhere where there is a need to move large amounts of data in a closed, secured, and reliable manner would require 5G, and even more so Private 5G.
Committed to Private 5G Since 2017
We have publicly been talking about Private 5G in Enterprise and especially for Industry 4.0 as we could see the virtualization of the network potential for use where there are multiple devices, that require real-time simultaneous connections, orchestration, and connection to Edge AI computation.
With manufacturing becoming more competitive, the need for automation for efficiency, plus requirements for health and safety, plus flexibility to expand/shrink/move parts of the production line, plus concerns over security – it is no wonder there is high demand for Private 5G, and no wonder Amazon have taken notice.
We understood very early on that the key to engaging Smart Manufacturing is based on a few basic key principles:
- Engage in a business model that is familiar and flexible like SaaS license fees
- Be hardware-agnostic so that you can connect with any vendor up or down the chain
- Make it simple – make implementation as easy to procure and manage as any other IT system and speak in the terms IT understands – capacity
- It is not about 5G – this seems like a strange statement from a 5G software company, but we have learned with experience that the use cases come first
Use Case First, Technology Second
As we have seen a vision become a reality one key prediction has rung through loud and true – the technology is a conduit for real requirements. Factories need to connect their cameras to AI, or manage AGVs, to synchronize automation. They have real needs that they want to be able to manage in a simple way. They do not need to know or want to know what a virtualized DU or CU is or how it works – they need to know that the network can handle speed and ultra-low latency in a reliable and secure manner.
We are in an exciting time as implementations of our software is moving out of labs and testing into full production floors. The experience we have gained over the past 4 years has been invaluable in tailoring our offering to real needs. It may seem a little cliché but we see that the future is happening today!