Huawei embraces 5.5G for an intelligent world

Huawei embraces 5.5G for an intelligent world

The much anticipated commercialization of 5.5G (5G Advanced) which starts in 2024 has energized exhibitors and speakers at MWC 2024 in Barcelona.

In his keynote at the event, Li Peng, Huawei's Corporate Senior Vice President and President of ICT Sales & Service, outlined why this next technology step is so important for the ICT industry.

Over the past 20 years, changes such as the transition from All-IP to All-Cloud, had transformed the way people work and live, unlocking a trillion-dollar opportunity, said Li. What he called the “fully intelligent world” was now redefining information and value streams, and unleashing the potential of ubiquitous connectivity.

AI alone would create over 100 billion gigabytes of data, and 10-fold traffic over the next few years, said Li. This offers a huge requirement and opportunity for carriers. Generative AI has already boosted content creation, and in 2026 alone AI will produce over 250 billion images.

For carriers that means more innovative applications like Livestreaming, Glasses-free 3D and cloud phones. To provide a good experience, these applications will require guaranteed uplink, QoS, and latency. This provides an opportunity for them to monetize mobile services beyond connectivity and will open a hundred-billion-dollar market, said Li.

For example, one carrier which has launched a 5G livestreaming package providing guaranteed uplink for its customers, has seen ARPU increase by over 70%, said Li. In the transport sector, another carrier's 5G new calling services provide accurate real-time positioning and interaction mid-call for applications like car insurance claims. Car owners can complete a one-stop insurance claim filing, on-site survey, and claim settlement in the event of a traffic accident. Li said this new type of service has helped the carrier successfully monetize the B2B2C market.

Advanced technologies like wide-area IoT are also changing the game for industrial applications. With a 10-fold increase in connection density and precision, the ICT sector can meet the connectivity needs of any industrial scenario, from smart grids to manufacturing, storage, and logistics.

High-bandwidth and low-latency networks make it possible to push the boundaries of ubiquitous connectivity. “Now, intelligent vehicles can work nonstop and production systems can be controlled in real time. Everything can be connected, from roads to warehouses, from land to sea, and from cities to the most remote places on earth.”

New services require stronger network capabilities, such as deterministic experience or Passive-IoT, Li explained. For example, cloud phones can use remote storage and processing power with a real-time broadband connection. So consumers can enjoy better experiences in cloud gaming and remote office. For industrial applications like smart grids and logistics, connection density and precision need to raise by 10 times.

“This is how the intelligent world is redefining information and value streams, and unleashing the potential of ubiquitous connectivity. The opportunities are limitless, and by 2030, the intelligent economy will be worth almost 19 trillion dollars”.

The intelligent world will clearly raise the bar for networks, said Li. Uplink-centric broadband communication, real-time broadband communication, and all-scenario IoT will become the new norm. So 5.5G will be the path forward, and leading carriers have already verified 5.5G capabilities on commercial networks. The tests cover a wide range of scenarios, including smart connections for people, homes, vehicles and stadiums.

“We are happy to see that pioneers are already paving the way from China, to the Middle-East, and Europe, we are seeing more and more 10-gigabit smart cities,” said Li.

Huawei is releasing a full series of 5.5G solutions and products for different scenarios, as well as the industry's first AI foundation model for telcos, which provides a set of advanced capabilities designed to help carriers maximize the value of their networks, especially in areas like guaranteed network experience and automated O&M.

Li concluded by calling on the industry to embrace 5.5G and build a solid ICT foundation for a more prosperous intelligent world.


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