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Global 5G: Rise of a Transformational Technology

The fifth generation of wireless cellular communications, “5G” continues to power ahead in 2020 with over 105 5G networks now deployed around the world. Today, 5G Americas, the wireless industry trade association and voice of 5G and LTE for the Americas, published a whitepaper produced by Rysavy Research titled Global 5G: Rise of a transformational technology, highlighting the intensiflying role of 5G and its impact on every facet of our lives.

With 3GPP specifications completed for Releases 15 and 16, and intense progress underway for Release 17, Global 5G: Rise of a transformational technology delves into the most important cellular wireless updates of 2020 and beyond:


  • 3GPP has completed specifications for both Release 15 and Release 16, addressing a range of use cases far beyond LTE
  • Release 17 work has begun to define support for low-complexity devices, operation in 52.6 to 71 GHz, satellites, multiple SIMs, and NR multicast and broadcast
  • Operators are transitioning to standalone architecture, lowering network latencies, improving coverage, addressing industrial IoT, and simplifying operations
  • Massive MIMO and beamforming are enabling use of spectrum above 6 GHz, as well as improving performance in lower bands.
  • Internet of Things is undergoing wide scale adoption with tens of billions of new connected devices expected over the next decade
  • The industry is now deploying versions of LTE that can operate in unlicensed spectrum, with capabilities for 5G using unlicensed spectrum now also specified
  • Edge computing and artificial intelligence are re-shaping network architecture to deliver ultra-low latency, lower network operational costs, and support new types of applications


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