Improving 5G Availability and Speeds through Mid-band Spectrum and Massive MIMO

Summary Bullets:

S. Soh

• The time is ripe for mobile operators to ramp up their 5G deployment to enhance their coverage and speeds to support new applications.

• Mobile operators with substantial mid-band spectrum and deployed massive multiple-input and multiple-output (M-MIMO) technology can deliver faster speeds and achieve service differentiation.

The deployment of 5G is well underway and people around the world are having a taste of the next-gen experience. GlobalData forecasts 5G subscriptions will reach 861 million by end of the year, doubling the figure in 2020. The availability of 5G is also rising in major cities, based on a study conducted by Ookla (Global 5G Benchmark Report Q1 – Q2 2021). The study defines availability as the percent of users on 5G-capable devices that spend the majority of their time on 5G, both roaming and on-network. Besides coverage, the availability of 5G-capable phones is a key factor in driving adoption. According to GSA, there were over 600 commercially available 5G devices in August 2021, which included mobile phones from major brands such as Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Google, and Xiaomi. While the initial focus was in launching 5G commercial services, the race now is about increasing availability and speeds.

Continue reading “Improving 5G Availability and Speeds through Mid-band Spectrum and Massive MIMO”

Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q2 2021: Major Cloud Developments

Alfie Amir
A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Microsoft’s move to open new data centers in Malaysia will drive cloud adoption and may attract other hyperscalers to build facilities in the country.
  • Domestic telcos are expanding their cloud capabilities through partnerships and acquisitions to address the high-growth market.

This report discusses major enterprise telecom events based on announcements from industry players in the recent quarter.  For more on the previous update, please see Malaysian Telecom Update Q1 2021 (April 29, 2021).

1. Microsoft’s Plan to Open Data Centers in Malaysia: Microsoft announced plans to strengthen its regional presence by establishing new data centers in Malaysia, adding 1 million skilled local professionals, and forming the MyDigital Alliance Leadership Council to collaborate on cloud-first and digital-native policy recommendations. Continue reading “Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q2 2021: Major Cloud Developments”

Carrier Global Domination Dreams Conquered by Pragmatism

R-Pritchard 071521

Summary Bullets:   

  • The refocused geographical target of Deutsche Telekom’s T-Systems ICT solutions business highlights a fundamental shift in ambitions from carriers’ earlier global domination goals in the enterprise market.
  • Market evolution, technology developments, and commercial reality (the need to lower costs) have made carriers refocus onto more sharply defined target geographies and customers.

In the heady days of the 1990s, when telecom markets in the Western world opened up to competition, carriers developed plans for global domination – sometimes on a go-it-alone basis, but more often than not via partnerships and joint ventures. Who today remembers Global One (Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom/Orange, Sprint), Unisource (KPN, Swisscom, Telia), and Concert (BT-MCI, then BT-AT&T)?  Billions of dollars were spent investing in worldwide expansion ambitions, but nobody emerged as triumphant in the battle to dominate the global enterprise market.  More recently, Telefonica has been reducing its footprint in Latin America, Vodafone has refocused on Europe and Africa, and BT has been selling off its in-country assets outside of the UK.  T-Systems will still support key strategic accounts under its revised strategy, reflecting a reduction in MNC account ambitions which is salient across the whole sector. Continue reading “Carrier Global Domination Dreams Conquered by Pragmatism”

ASEAN 5G Q2 2021 Roundup: Wider Industry Collaborations Driving Enterprise 5G Ecosystem

Alfie Amir
A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Indonesian telcos have launched 5G networks, while a Malaysian provider has detailed its deployment plan from this year until 2024. In more mature markets, telcos continue to expand their coverage and enterprise capabilities through new partnerships and collaboration initiatives.
  • 5G adoption has been revised slightly upward, driven by new launches and deployment commitments and wider industry collaborations.

Key Enterprise 5G Developments

April 2021 – Singtel Launches GENIE 5G-in-a-Box to Drive 5G Solution Development in Singapore: With 5G Garage and partnerships with AWS and Azure on 5G edge computing, Singtel is taking a further step with its 5G-in-a-box solution to accelerate enterprise 5G development in the country.  The portable and modular solution enables enterprises and device manufacturers to test and experience 5G networking as well as develop new applications anywhere with the need to join Singtel in its testing facilities.  Singtel also recently announced a Melbourne-based innovation center to focus on AI, cloud, and 5G solutions as part of its new enterprise strategy.  This could benefit its telco associates in the region such as AIS, Globe, and Telkomsel in driving the ecosystem and developing new 5G solutions in their respective countries.  (For more, please see Singtel and Ericsson’s GENIE 5G-in-a-Box Will Drive 5G Solution Development in Singapore,” April 13, 2021; and Singtel’s NCS Strategy Hits the Right Notes, but Might be Looking in the Wrong Places,” May 31, 2021. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q2 2021 Roundup: Wider Industry Collaborations Driving Enterprise 5G Ecosystem”

KubeCon Europe 2021: Key Themes Centered on Observability and Service Mesh

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C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:            

  • Prominent KubeCon themes included observability and service mesh.
  • New Relic and F5/NGINX made key announcements.

The open source software (OSS) community huddled up last week during KubeCon Europe, clearly affected by the past year’s strain on companies and DevOps teams, resolving to refine digitization via emerging technologies. Twice a year, KubeCon provides the industry with a developer-focused gauge of key trends and innovations related to app modernization, DevOps, and Kubernetes/container innovations. Continue reading “KubeCon Europe 2021: Key Themes Centered on Observability and Service Mesh”

The 5G Fixed Wireless Access Opportunity: Where Does It Fit Within Enterprise Services?

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • In recent months, AT&T and Verizon have launched business services leveraging 5G fixed wireless access (FWA) that complement consumer versions introduced in 2019 or 2020.
  • We examine where these services fit into the rest of their business portfolios, how are they positioned, and potential pitfalls and competitive threats the operators need to look out for.

AT&T launched 5G FWA for businesses in March 2021, described as the “first nationwide business-focused broadband network.”  Customers can choose from Sierra Wireless or Ericsson/Cradlepoint routers and pay for either 50 or 100 Mbps speeds (on low-band 5G, as AT&T’s mmWave service is still limited).  The operator positions these services as fiber alternatives, where fiber may be unavailable, or hints that there may also be cases where customers may appreciate the speeds, flexibility, and easier provisioning of 5G.  It notes that it has 2.5 million business locations already served by fiber or wireless broadband (as LTE has been offered for two years) and the new 5G service offers equal control and security to fiber through closed, dedicated tunnels to the mobile network that are not accessible by other devices.  It is described as ideal for companies that have many distributed sites (such as large retailers), and along with fiber, these customers can count on AT&T for nationwide coverage.  AT&T usage examples include POS solutions for retailers, pop-up stores, and backup, with prioritization noted as an option.  AT&T has further launched an expanded portfolio with Cradlepoint that combines AT&T’s broadband network, data plans, and management with Cradlepoint’s 5G adapters, routers, and wireless WAN lifecycle management platform.  New vertical opportunities are noted by the partners; Cradlepoint offers a 5G mobile router for in-vehicle networks, as well as adapters that can integrate with AT&T’s SD-WAN service to position 5G as a primary connectivity option. Continue reading “The 5G Fixed Wireless Access Opportunity: Where Does It Fit Within Enterprise Services?”

Capgemini Opens 5G Lab in Paris, Detailing Strategy to Energize Customers to Develop Innovative Use Cases

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • Capgemini held an analyst event at its new 5G Lab in Paris on March 30, which detailed its strategy to generate excitement about 5G and drive usage among both existing and potential business customers.
  • The lab will not only demo use cases that showcase the capabilities of 5G to drive transformation, but will also help businesses develop and test PoCs and deploy new use cases at scale, while navigating the complexity of the ecosystem for connectivity, edge, cloud, and other enablers.

Capgemini’s new 5G Lab is a sister facility to one in Mumbai, India; the company also has a facility in Portugal that helps telecom providers develop 5G network solutions.  The company is clearly excited about the potential of 5G to energize digital transformation, ignite innovative use cases, and of course, drive business.  As a leading systems integrator and provider of solutions that enable intelligent industry solutions, Capgemini sees 5G as an important and potentially disruptive enabler that can help redefine how the world will be connected and lead to new revenue-generating business models.  It points out that 5G is the first wireless network developed with the enterprise in mind due to its high availability, capacity, and speeds; its low latency (especially when coupled with edge solutions); its support for massive IoT; and its enablement of mission-critical applications. Continue reading “Capgemini Opens 5G Lab in Paris, Detailing Strategy to Energize Customers to Develop Innovative Use Cases”

ASEAN 5G Q1 2021 Roundup: More Edge Computing and Private Network Developments

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Malaysia has joined Indonesia and Vietnam with its commitment to launch 5G this year, while telcos in the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand are moving to the next deployment phase with a wider focus on standalone (SA) architecture, private network services, and industry collaborations.
  • 5G adoption has been revised slightly upward, driven by the increase in the subscriptions and lower overall mobile users.

Key Announcements

February 2021 – Singtel Launches Singapore’s First Commercial Indoor 5G Network: Singtel expanded its 5G coverage to VivoCity Mall, with plans to extend the coverage to other popular malls in the country this year.  While the focus was mainly on enhancing customer experience through faster speeds (up to 1.2 Gbps), the indoor network is expected to drive new 5G applications in the retail industry such as enhanced shopping experience through AR/VR, personalized customer experience, and smart inventory. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q1 2021 Roundup: More Edge Computing and Private Network Developments”

Blockchain Rivals Seek Out Banking Customers via Foreign Opportunities

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • ConsenSys is partnering with the Chinese government’s blockchain network to integrate its technology across a nationwide system to spur blockchain use, focused on the financial sector.
  • Oracle has gained an edge in the competitive blockchain platforms space by integrating a new blockchain data format into its flagship relational database offering.

This quarter’s issue of GlobalData’s “Blockchain Watch highlights a set of aggressive moves between blockchain competitors, including the establishment of global partnerships (which involve foreign government entities) as well as the development of deeper integration between blockchain and traditional operational systems, further adoption of Ethereum, and the formation of partnerships that highlight unique use cases. Continue reading “Blockchain Rivals Seek Out Banking Customers via Foreign Opportunities”

Mobile Robots Have Arrived in Europe – Taking Robot Baby Steps

Summary Bullets:

J. Marcus
  • ‘Service robots’ are coming outdoors as 5G enables operation beyond the range of WiFi.
  • In Europe, early trials in the Nordics point towards both industrial and B2C use cases.

When 5G networks were first deployed in China, mobile robots were wheeled out almost immediately, demonstrating the possibilities of using the wireless network to control connected devices beyond the range of WiFi.  As early as February of last year, makeshift hospitals set up in Wuhan to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic were using robots to perform ultrasonic scans, while on streets around the country, 5G-enabled robots were providing body temperature testing, spraying disinfectants, cleaning surfaces, and delivering prescriptions.

Continue reading “Mobile Robots Have Arrived in Europe – Taking Robot Baby Steps”