The mobile platform is already the biggest technology platform in history, and has already overtaken PC and mobile computing is expanding beyond the smartphone applications. 5G could make it bigger to further transform societies and industries. This technology evolution is expected to enable new services, connect new industries and devices, and empower new user experiences, to support expanded connectivity needs for the next decade and beyond. It is envisioned that a national program built around the evolution of this technology will help India address the digital divide in a timeline that meets the aspirations of the government.
Adoption of 5G will require substantial investment in more downstream innovation than previous generations of communications systems. New business ecosystems are expected to emerge in which a multiplicity of players will meet, compete and work together. This will open opportunities to start-ups and smaller ecosystem players, which will eventually profit from the innovation capabilities offered by networks providing open interfaces to develop network "apps" and services.
Thus, the 5G India Forum will serve as a strategic national initiative which concerns all stakeholders, private and public, small and large, to meet the challenge of making 5G a reality in India, at timelines aligning with the rest of world.
5G India Forum is a collaborative body under the aegis of COAI.
- This forum aims to become the leading force in the development of next generation communications and will enable synergizing national efforts and will play a significant role in shaping the strategic, commercial and regulatory development of the 5G ecosystem in India.
Terms of reference
- Develop national policy on 5G along with DoT
- Develop consensus within India on 5G systems / infrastructures / services, and prepare a vision document on priority.
- Identify vertical application domains which would benefit from 5G and associated challenges.
- Identify the societal, economic, environmental, business and technological benefits obtainable by an early adoption of 5G.
- Collect and evaluate publicly available visions and major technical trends from industry, research community and available information from other regions.
- Identify commonalities, bottlenecks and differences in visions and technical trends.
- Prepare input documents for facilitating dialogues on standardization, technology development, spectrum availability and international engagements.
- Support the creation of a venture like program to encourage eco-system players develop 5G services.
- Collaborate with various international forums working on 5G.
- Structure / Membership
- 5G India Forum shall be a collaborative body under the aegis of COAI.
- 5G India Forum will work through various Committees including:
- 5G Spectrum Committee
- 5G Equipment & Devices Committee
- 5G Policy and Regulatory Committee
- The 5G India Forum Membership will be Free of Cost and will be based on Approval.
The Forum would be open for all members of COAI and they automatically become the members of 5G India Forum.
Other TSPs / Associations / OEM
These stakeholders need to send a request for membership at firstname.lastname@example.org for approval by the COAI.
Government of India Agencies / Departments
These stakeholders will participate in the Committee meetings based on invitations.
These stakeholders will participate in the Committee meetings based on invitations.
- About 5G
Recent trends have shown that dependency on data is increasing very fast. Even in a country like India which is supposed to be voice centric, there is immense growth in data consumption. This can be seen with the shifting of focus of telecom service providers from voice-centric networks to data-centric networks. The battle between operators is now over the user experience in urban environments with high traffic volumes per square km. Mobile data has also tangibly benefited the society in the field of health, education banking, etc. The wireless communication services are expected to expand into new market segments to facilitate the digital economy, e.g. smart grid, e-health, intelligent transport systems, traffic control, agriculture, retail, trade and tourism which would bring requirements beyond what can be addressed in today’s 3G/4G connected environment. To meet these new challenges, there is a need to understand these requirements with respect to Indian consumer perspective and create and support standards which enable implementation of these next generation services. This needs to create a new generation of network systems and radio technology which could deliver extreme broadband, ultra-robust, low latency connectivity and massive machine to machine networking and create a seamless platform for Internet of Things (IoT). It is expected that next generation technology (5G) will handle vast variations in different use cases. However, different use cases will have different spectrum requirements in terms of frequency, coverage, bandwidth, etc.
5G is not only about handling existing systems more efficiently but also cater for new possibilities and use cases many of which are yet not known. It is envisaged that 5G will be catering for the scalability and adaptability across extreme variations in consumer requirements. New demands for new businesses and industries will create diverse requirements and will therefore, lead to a newer architecture. Some other factors to categorize services can be as follows –
- Performance critical – very high peak data rates providing unlimited experience
- Capacity critical – to accommodate and manage huge number of concurrent connections
- Time critical – very low (<1 ms) radio latency
- Mobility critical – very high speed mobile systems (> 100 kmph)
- Cost critical – very low cost for massive deployment
- Energy critical – devices requiring large battery life (>10 years)
- Coverage critical – to cover large distances or deep in-building coverage
5G needs to support and unify all that have been added to 4G; like LTE Broadcast, device to device discovery, unlicensed spectrum, but also provide significant improvements over 4G. The continued 4G LTE evolution will take advantage of new spectrum opportunities below 6GHz that are becoming available before 2020. 5G will also take advantage of new spectrum opportunities that will become available beyond 2020, including 2G/3G re-farming and new spectrum above 6GHz like mm Wave. To support the expanded connectivity needs for the next decade, 5G should be much more than higher data rates and the addition of new spectrum.
To meet this vision, 5G needs the scalability across extreme variation of use cases; such as uniform fiber-like broadband everywhere—not just higher peak data rates, to new services like ultra-reliable mission critical applications to remotely control for example critical infrastructure or vehicles, and connect everything from simple battery powered sensors to complex robots. 5G needs to aim for a truly edgeless connectivity where devices are no longer just endpoints and a unified air interface for all spectrum and services. This will create unified platform designed for expanded connectivity in the next decade and beyond with improved cost and energy efficiency. So, 5G is not just a new generation, but a new kind of network, anticipated around 2020, that will transform the role of wireless.
The 5G technology should be scalable to extreme variation, so that today’s and tomorrow’s use cases can be serviced. The technology need to be supporting use cases such as:
- New form factors, wearables and massive proliferation of sensors and machine to machine type communication, or human to machine communication.
- Sensing what is around for new services and experiences, autonomous vehicles, with connectivity for example for collision avoidance.
- Smart homes/buildings/cities that require various connectivity needs, from high definition surveillance video to simply connecting parking meters.
- Control of critical infrastructure such as the electric grid, and industrial process automation
- Remote control of vehicles, such as cars, drones and other flying vehicles.
- Health services, emergency response and remote control of critical medical procedures where failure is not an option.
- Extreme mobile broadband both indoor and outdoor that no longer makes the distinction between fixed and wireless access meaningful.
5G is much more than higher peak rates and wider spectrum, it needs the scalability to address an extreme variation in use case and devices, that roughly spans the following service types:
- Massive number of connected things
- Enhanced mobile broadband
- Mission critical services, and
- Proximal and aware services
Defining 5G Vision, Technology and Roadmap
India has traditionally been a consumer of technology, but played a larger role in developing and delivering services to the world. We should leverage on this fact and work towards building India as an empowered society, building and developing solutions for itself and the world to consume. Several policy instruments by the Government of India like Make in India, Digital India, etc. act as a vehicle to achieve this goal.
The mobile platform is already the biggest technology platform in history. Government of India has played a larger role helping in the proliferation of mobile broadband, and India leads the world with the mobile customers exceeding the fixed line customers. 5G could make this bigger to further transform societies and industries, with the right policy instruments in place.
Timeline of events on 5G
COAI is a market representation partner of 3GPP, a world leader in the standardization of cellular technologies. As per their recent schedule (see graphic below), the group agreed to have an intermediate milestone for the early completion of the Non-standalone (NSA) 5G NR (Next Generation Radios) mode for the enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) use-case by Dec 2017. In Non-standalone mode, the connection is anchored in LTE while 5G NR carriers are used to boost data-rates and reduce latency. This paves way for industry to start building trail platforms (aka, prototypes) and do operator trials in 2Q 2018, and commercial launch in 2019.