Authored By: Saurabh Verma, Head, ICT & Digital Transformation – MEA, Frost & Sullivan

Market Context

Digital transformation is transforming our world and 5G is expected to play a pivotal role in this transformation. 5G networks will capitalize upon the existing technologies, i.e. 4G LTE and LTE. Additionally, functionalities like network slicing, millimeter wave, massive multiple-input and multiple-output, 3D beam forming, and small cells, will provide an edge to operators to innovate use cases in the enterprise space, as well as for the day to day lives of the society.

Industries like transportation, logistics, healthcare, Hi-tech, government services, media & entertainment, etc. are the ones expected to deliver a variety of use cases that will leverage the high-speed connectivity and low latency of 5G networks.

5G Use Cases in the GCC

The 5G network is categorized into three pillars, which will drive the uptake of the next-generation technologies; these are enhanced Mobile Broadband, massive machine type communications, and ultrareliable low latency communications. All of these will together enable a wide range of Internet of things and industry 4.0 applications.

With 5G there is no “one size fits all” solution, every country and region will have to gear up to develop its own 5G plan and strategy. The 5G use cases are likely to be unique with each use case requiring different performance requirements; which essentially means that operators will need a flexible 5G network to be able to deliver such diverse requirements. The early commercial use cases of 5G are expected to be driven by eMBB by increasing broadband in dense areas and at mega events, omnipresent broadband access and increased demand for mobile services. Additionally, AR/VR has the highest and immediate potential to be addressed by 5G in the media and gaming industries. The current connectivity speeds are restricting the true potential of AR/VR experience, which is expected to be addressed by 5G networks.

Enhanced mobile broadband services will positively impact the sectors that require real time decision making, such as financial services, citizen / civil defense services, retail, etc. While 4G networks are currently being leveraged; 5G will drive channels to deliver superior efficiencies and cost rationalization across the board.

In the GCC, autonomous vehicles, drones, AR/VR, automation process in oil and gas, automated warehouse management, Smart Cities, electronic health records, mHealth, smart metering for utilities, waste management and monitoring, and emergency response offer tremendous potential as 5G use cases.

Huawei’s Announcements at the 5G Summit

5G is all about the ecosystem of partners. If 5G has to gain traction, then it is critical that the ecosystem stakeholders, i.e. telecom operators, vendors / OEM’s, governments, and academia collaborate and work together to develop functional and compatible products and services relevant for multiple industries.

Held during the 2018 GITEX in Dubai under the theme, “5G is Now, Sailing to New eMBB Horizons,” the summit promoted a 5G Ecosystem in the Middle East by bringing together telecom operators, regulators and other stakeholders from the region to discuss 5G from a perspective of business and policy. The summit focused on educating the stakeholders on the true potential of 5G networks and the importance of developing local 5G use cases that are relevant to the GCC region.

Huawei also conducted live trials of its 5G use cases demonstrating drone-taxi, a VR showroom and a tele-operated driving showcasing its capabilities in delivering innovative use cases. To support its commitment towards developing 5G use cases relevant to the region, Huawei also signed up MoU’s with key partners (Media Pro, Orange Business Services, and TPCast). This is a favorable step to strengthen Huawei’s 5G ecosystem in the GCC to offer end-to-end solutions in helping operators in their transformation to launch 5G commercially.

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