Nokia has announced it will be demonstrating ‘future’ 5G technologies for the IoT at Mobile World Congress 2015. The first expected commercial deployments of the yet-to-be-standardised technology may be five years from now but the Finnish kit maker was keen to emphasise its 5G and IoT agenda.
The vendor said it will demonstrate 5G radio equipment on ‘new’ millimetre (mm) and centimetre (cm) wave bands, claiming this will offer best possible capacity and new frame structures enabling single-digit millisecond latency.
Nokia said it will also launch an extended Mobile Guard security solution, designed for complex IoT applications such as for smart cities, eHealth and smart grid. “The Internet of Things, a driver for what we call the Programmable World, opens tremendous potential to expand the human possibilities of technology,” Kathrin Buvac, Vice President, Strategy at Nokia Networks, said.
“Within the next ten years, we will see 50 billion things connected, enabling industries to become more efficient and helping people to improve their daily lives. At Nokia Networks, we are already demonstrating key technologies like 5G that will make mobile networks the natural choice for bringing these possibilities to reality.”
Nokia has recently made a fair amount of noise around 5G, and has said it aims to conduct the first pre-standard trials of the technology in South Korea by 2018. The firm is, however, fully aware of the early stages in the development of 5G. Peter Merz, Head of Radio Systems, Technology & Innovation at Nokia Networks recently told Telecoms.com: “I want to stress that 5G is not around the corner, we’re expecting the first commercial roll-outs and deployments starting in 2020.
“We still have five years to go in order to research technologies, go through standardisation, free up [the required] spectrum, verify the technologies and then iron out specifications in order to have a ready-made, lean-cut, efficient technology that can be deployed by operators starting in 2020. 5G is like a marathon, it’s not a race, therefore we need to keep this commercial deployment date 2020 in mind.”
Nokia claims to already have been providing IoT-ready radio and core networks suitable for machine-type connectivity with minimal latency, and said its prototype 5G mm and cm wave radio systems can operate between 3.5-70 GHz bands.
According to Merz, this frequency variation is vital for 5G and development needs to focus on covering both the higher and lower ends of the spectrum. “There is currently a bit of a misunderstanding in the industry that 5G is only associated with these higher frequency bands like millimetre-wave,” he said. “This is from my perspective a total misunderstanding. What we at Nokia say is that 5G needs to be optimised to existing frequency bands of below 6 GHz as well as being able to unlock that potential we see with the frequency bands that are at the upper end: 20 to 30 GHz or even 70 to 80 GHz.
“5G will try to find its way in existing as well as new frequency bands and especially for deployments where you need to have deep coverage. For example in connecting two smart-meters or some other kind of smart device, then you also need the lower spectrum bands as this makes the deployment more economical.”
As another sign of South Korean operators’ keenness to advance with the next generation technology, Korea Telecom is partnering with Nokia on the 5G and IoT demos at MWC 2015. Seong-Mok Oh, Head of Network Group, Senior Vice President at Korea Telecom, said: “Internet of Things will be the next big thing in the future of mobile business and we are truly delighted to collaborate with Nokia on advancing IoT solutions for mobile networks. Korea Telecom is working to embrace the huge opportunity that IoT service will bring to the industry.
“I hope that the strategic partnership with Nokia, including the joint demonstration at MWC 2015, will lay a foundation for the two companies’ leadership position along the journey towards an IoT world.”