A next-gen transport network for the 5G RAN? Every operator needs one. Call it fronthaul, midhaul, backhaul or "X-Haul," this is a foundational investment that will determine not only how 5G networks are deployed and operated, but how customers consume and interact with services.
On October 9 in New York, my colleague Heavy Reading Principal Analyst Sterling Perrin and I will co-host Light Reading's 5G Transport & Networking Strategies Event. The aim is to look at how packet/optical networking, edge data centers and distributed cloud platforms can combine to support the new 5G RAN and core architecture, and the many new service types associated with 5G.
This is the second year we have run the event, which is itself a "reboot" of Light Reading's long-running 4G backhaul event series. This year's conference is coming together nicely. Together with speakers from the top U.S. operators, a raft of experts from key technology suppliers, and a highly informed audience (of course!), we will explore the key issues operators, and the industry at large, must address in the design and operation of 5G transport networks.
You can register for the event here.
Our basic thesis is that connectivity between radio sites, edge data centers and cloud platforms is an investment in critical assets that will generate a network with very low cost-of-production, and scale to extreme traffic and device densities. Over time, this will enable advanced use cases linked to ultra-low-latency and ultra-reliability. In combination with edge cloud, we believe the design of the 5G X-Haul transport network will significantly determine how customers interact with 5G services. In this sense, RAN transport is more than a necessary cost; it is an architecture for the long-term commercial development of the 5G.
It's important not only to have a vision, however. We can all agree on things we'd like to see. Operators also need a practical route to deployment. To get 5G into live service in 2018 and 2019, operators need to prioritize -- ruthlessly -- to identify what is necessary and possible in the short term. The focus then is on strategies that can be depended on to meet near-term launch requirements, but have the flexibility to extend to support advanced services in later phases.
Here's a look at some of the service provider speakers on the agenda (with perhaps one or two more to come!):
- Glenn Wellbrock, Director, Optical Transport Network, Architecture, Design & Planning, Verizon
- Gordon Mansfield, Vice President, RAN & Device Design, AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)
- Brian Daniels, Senior Vice President, Strategic Networks, Z5G, Zayo Group Inc. (NYSE: ZAYO)
- Aron Smith, VP Interconnection Product Management, EdgeConneX Inc.
- Ray La Chance, President & CEO, ZenFi
And among the vendor speakers supporting the event:
- Alan Gibbemeyer, Senior Director of Global Business Development, Acacia Communications Inc.
- Mark Allen, Director of Systems Engineering and Account CTO, Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN)
- Denis Fluet, Senior Director, Portfolio Strategy, Ciena
- Kevin Morgan, Chief Marketing Officer, Clearfield Inc. (Nasdaq: CLFD)
- Anders Svensson, Principal Solution Manager, 5G, Ericsson North America
- Hemant Malik, Global Head of Product Line 5G Transport, Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC)
- Shane McCelland, VP, Strategy and Business Development, Head of Transport, Ericsson
- Joe Mocerino, Principal Solutions Architect, Packet Optical Networking, Fujitsu Ltd. (Tokyo: 6702; London: FUJ; OTC: FJTSY)
- Dan Parsons, Sr. Product Marketing Manager, Infinera Corp. (Nasdaq: INFN)
- Jon Baldry, Director, Metro Marketing, Infinera
- Stawan Kadepurkar, EVP & Business Head for Telecommunications, L&T Technology Services
Here's the registration link again; registration is free for communications service providers.
Hope to see you in New York on October 9!
— Gabriel Brown, Principal Analyst, Mobile Networks and 5G, Heavy Reading