Ultrafast data rates. High availability. Extreme flexibility. Support for an exponentially larger number of connected devices as compared to 4G. 5G promises all of these features, paving the way for a dizzying array of use cases ranging from smart transport to advanced critical communications to autonomous factories to immersive consumer experiences. Analyst firm IHS Markit predicts that 5G will drive $12.3 trillion of global economic output in 2035, enabling enterprises and industries to improve productivity, reduce costs and open the door to new opportunities.
And while 5G has the potential to fundamentally change lives and businesses without ubiquitous, high quality connectivity, it also has the potential to further widen an already gaping digital divide if market segments and populations are bypassed by the 5G revolution. Specifically, this could affect industries and regions unserved or underserved by terrestrial networks. 5G-enabled digital technologies have the potential to dramatically reshape the commercial maritime industry by introducing new efficiencies and improving safety; however, connection between onshore facilities and vessels at sea cannot be delivered by terrestrial networks alone. A 5G connection can support advanced healthcare applications such as telemedicine, real-time remote monitoring and image file transfers, but the cost and complexity associated with 5G infrastructure buildouts mean that medical centers in remote regions are unlikely to receive those types of services for many years to come.
Building the 5G ecosystem
For 5G to fully capitalize on its potential, it must be built on a global ecosystem of interconnected networks, utilizing multiple different and complementary technologies that comprise both terrestrial and satellite infrastructure. With satellite technology, 5G networks can be rolled out more quickly, more cost-effectively and on a more ubiquitous basis than over terrestrial networks alone, thus ensuring that 5G use cases can be deployed in any location, at any time. Satellite enables a truly seamless 5G network via a number of unique attributes, including the following:
- Ubiquity: Ability to deliver service to unserved and underserved areas.
- On the move: Enabling network availability to “moving platforms” such as aircraft, passenger vehicles, high-speed trains.
- Security: Support for future critical communications use cases such as public safety.
- Simultaneity: Support for multicast/broadcast services for data delivery toward the network edges and even to user devices.
SES Networks and 5G
SES Networks is actively engaged in supporting the deployment of seamless and ubiquitous 5G by investing in multi-orbit capabilities in GEO (Geostationary Earth Orbit) and MEO (Medium Earth Orbit) to address the massive bandwidth requirements of 5G networks. Our revolutionary O3b mPOWER next generation terabit-scale satellite system, which will augment our existing MEO assets starting in 2021, will take our capabilities even further, delivering even more flexibility and scalability required to support 5G use cases.
In addition, we are working with institutions and industry players across the value chain to develop standards and protocols to integrate satellite seamlessly into the 5G networks. Our successful initiatives in this area include the SaT5G consortium demo at the EuCNC2018 conference, where we showcased satellite backhauling features and efficient edge delivery of multimedia content as a proof-of-concept for their integration into the 5G network.
Last year saw another important milestone at the 9th FOKUS FUSECO Forum event, where SATis5 demonstrated 5G capabilities over satellite, including SDN, NFV and network slicing of enhanced mobile broadband and internet of things networks. We are also teaming up with the leading MNOs and mobile industry vendors to accelerate the uptake of 5G under the 5G-VINNI (5G Verticals Innovation Infrastructure) project, funded under the European Commission. Our end-to-end facility enables trials for advanced vertical sector services such as public safety, eHealth, shipping, transportation, media and entertainment and automotive.
Learn more about SES Networks’ Participations in 5G Projects:
SES Networks is exhibiting at this year’s ConnecTechAsia. Drop by our hospitality suite at Level 4, Lotus 4D/4E of Marina Bay Sands to meet our experts and know more about our 5G efforts. You may also scan the QR code below to schedule a meeting with the team and visit our website for more details on our presence at CTA: