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Lifecycle Test, Assurance of 5G Vital to Its Success

Denise Culver
Heavy Lifting Analyst Notes
Denise Culver, Online Research Director
9/27/2018
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With every hue and cry from operators touting the benefits of 5G, the focus on what the next iteration of cellular technology will enable has been, thus far, mainly on what 5G will deliver.

But long before the first connected car or IoT ecosystem is connected to a 5G network, operators must figure out how to build and deploy networks that meet the service requirements 5G demands. This includes building a network that delivers the lowest latency, highest reliability, best power efficiency and greatest density for traffic volume.

For operators to successfully launch 5G networks and obtain the network quality necessary to support 5G applications, it's vital that they understand and implement service assurance, and test and measurement (T&M) throughout the entire 5G lifecycle. Yet, 5G introduces many new test and assurance challenges, including a new radio interface, wideband signals, advanced antennas, radio resource management and component miniaturization, all of which create unique prototyping and channel measurement demands.

These topics and more are explored in a new white paper, Overcoming T&M, Assurance Challenges in 5G Networks. Additionally, findings from the paper will be explored further in an upcoming webinar, Tackling New Test, Assurance Challenges In 5G.

Also discussed in the paper is the fact that 5G requires a transition to software-defined testing and assurance solutions that are flexible and efficient, an important differentiator, says Stephen Douglas, Solutions & Technical Strategy, Strategic Marketing with Spirent. "5G is dependent on the success of network virtualization to allow the network to simultaneously service different industry verticals, enable service agility and realize cost efficiencies. But virtualization is still in its infancy and comes with a steep learning curve, complexity and lack of guaranteed interoperability."

The paper also explores the role that automation will play in assuring 5G, which Sameh Yamany, CTO, VIAVI Solutions, says is vital.

"The impetus to automate should gain more widespread acceptance as operators reap benefits from initial network virtualization efforts. Nevertheless, it will become increasingly difficult to test, manage and optimize 5G networks that support new service types composed of multiple network slices without automated solutions.”

To download the white paper, click here.

To participate in a webinar based on this paper, register here.

This blog is sponsored by Spirent and VIAVI.

— Denise Culver, Director of Online Research, Heavy Reading

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PaulChau
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PaulChau,
User Rank: Light Beer
10/11/2018 | 12:35:37 AM
Re: 5G - along with the potential comes complexity
It works like any other products and services in the market today. Consumers need to know what they can expect before they can coerce themselves to buy that certain product or subscribe to that particular service. The hype circling around the foundation of 5G is of a high scale at this current moment, but what guarantees does it have to truly offer? Users of mobile tech are mostly looking for speed of connection and if this is the main guarantee that can be put out there by service providers, then I bet the future won't seem bleak.
Dave
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Dave,
User Rank: Light Beer
9/29/2018 | 2:43:28 PM
5G - along with the potential comes complexity
This discussion is an important one. 5G brings much more than bandwidth and latency improvements. The complexities driven by network slicing, small cells, wireline and wireless integration, significant service level commitments and more means automating network functions is an imperative. BAU is not the answer for assuring quality during rapid and continuous network changes.
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