Live from MWC: The move to 5G is a journey, not a ‘big bang’ | HCLTech

Live from MWC: The move to 5G is a journey, not a ‘big bang’

The evolution of the network and the move to 5G will not happen overnight. It’s a journey that will have transformational outcomes
4 min read
Nicholas Ismail
Nicholas Ismail
Global Head of Brand Journalism, HCLTech
4 min read
Live from MWC: The move to 5G is a journey, not a ‘big bang’

Like any digital transformation initiative, service providers and telcos rolling out 5G solutions need time.

They need time to test and experiment with different industrial use cases and ensure that the network can support any increased requirements.

Speaking at the HCLTech booth at MWC, Priyadarshi A. Das (Pad), Executive Vice President and TME Business Head, believes that the network is now nearly ready to support full scale 5G activities.

“The network is going to be open and very OEM agnostic. The open standards, procedures and protocols will continue to evolve, for [service providers and telcos] to monetize their networks,” says Pad.

The 5G network of the near future will have software at its core, with monetization a central theme for telcos and other traditional industries.

According to Pad, the network will also need an AI capability to enable self-optimized network and create a smart Network Operations Center.

“The AI element of network management is going to be key. This will accelerate what I call the automated network,” he says.


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The impact on industry

Pad envisions the stuff of science fiction when it comes to the integration of 5G into different industries.

The healthcare industry, for example, is going to be completely transformed and reliant on 5G.

The next generation hospital with next generation patient care and robot-supported surgeries will rely “on the speed, low latency and real-time enablement of 5G”, he says.

Pad also believes the manufacturing sector and the smart factory of the future is another industry that will see the most transformation from an effective 5G network.

An ecosystem of partners

Telco companies and other traditional industries aren’t technology experts. To create a truly open and capable 5G network, they need to work with an ecosystem of partners.

Hyperscalers, OEMs, operators and startups with very specific products need to come together to make large scale 5G roll-outs a reality.

“Companies like HCLTech are the glue,” says Pad. “We are bringing all these components together and building revenue generating use cases.

5G: It’s a journey

Embracing any new or groundbreaking technology takes time. With 5G, it needs time to be tested and should be rolled out in a structured way, in order to accelerate the monetization of the network.

“With transformation, there are certain areas where we need to crawl, walk and then run.

“Nobody has produced the kind of computing power or softwarization of the network needed to run 5G at the required scale. We need to segment [its development] in such a way that we understand our early mistakes before rolling out 5G on a large scale. It’s going to be a journey,” says Pad.

He adds: “5G will not be a big bang, it will take time and that’s okay. By adopting anything new, universal change management is very important and we must make sure that anything we do is going to have a positive impact on our planet.”

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