IMC 2019: 5G gets another push but wait only gets longer

New Delhi, Oct 14 (IANS) Giving India’s 5G dreams another push, several tech giants on Monday demonstrated potential power of 5G with live use cases on the inaugural day of the “India Mobile Congress 2019” here. A joint KPMG in India-IMC-COAI report, however, claimed that 5G is most likely to see widespread adoption only by 2025 in the country and till then, over 600 million broadband subscribers will have to manage with existing networks.

Leading the pack, Huawei announced the deployment of Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based “Massive MIMO optimization technology” in the Vodafone Idea network — a first in India.Massive MIMO leverages 5G technologies in 4G network.

The “Massive MIMO AI” solution uses random algorithm for modelling and prediction, collecting and analyzing data to optimize MIMO (multiple-input and multiple-output) performance.

AI-enabled “Massive MIMO” will enable Vodafone Idea to add automation capabilities to its network, greatly improving optimization efficiency, boosting cell capacity and enhancing end-user experience of the network, said the company.

“We are consistently deploying futuristic, next generation technologies to enhance the capacity and efficiency of our network. Adding AI capabilities to India’s largest deployment of ‘Massive MIMO’ for enhancing user experience is a further testament of our commitment to create a future-proof network for the digital era,” said Vishant Vora, Chief Technology Officer, Vodafone Idea Ltd.

According to Jay Chen, CEO, Huawei India, the deployed solution will enable Vodafone Idea enhance their pre-5G ‘Massive MIMO’ network.

“Huawei remains committed to supporting Vodafone Idea to fulfil their ambitions to maintain and strengthen their network offering in the Indian telecoms industry,” Chen added.

In another first for India, Ericsson and Airtel enabled a 5G-powered ‘Connected Music’ performance that involved connecting two parts of a musical performance using a live 5G network and presenting it as one — for live audiences at both locations.

One half of the performance had the singer and music composer, Siddharth Shankar Mahadevan perform ‘Jai Ho’ from the film ‘Slum Dog Millionaire’, whilst a Swedish band played at the Ericsson booth, about 100 metres away.

“Ericsson has been the first to deploy live 5G networks across 4 continents. We are committed to sharing our live 5G deployment experience and learnings with the Indian telecom operators and other key stakeholders as the country gets ready for 5G,” said Nunzio Mirtillo, Head of Ericsson South East Asia, Oceania and India.

Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus highlighted its unique developments achieved in the 5G technology segment through its smartphones, powered by the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus Mobile Platform.

“With the 5G era fast approaching, we will continue to invest our efforts towards developing this segment, and India will serve as a crucial market for us to strengthen this technology,” Vikas Agarwal, General Manager, OnePlus India said in a statement.

OnePlus also partnered with Hatch as the cloud gaming service provider to showcase the true power of 5G technology by using Hatch’s smartphone-based games streaming platform.

Meanwhile, a joint KPMG in India-IMC-COAI report released at the event mentioned that 5G is slated to potentially add between 0.35 per cent to 0.5 per cent to the GDP of India. KPMG estimated that India Inc has the potential to unlock $48.69 billion (Rs 3,408 billion) through the deployment of 5G over the next four years.

“5G is most likely to see widespread adoption by 2025 in India. Until then 2G, 4G and 5G will continue to co-exist,” said the report.

Huawei also showcased a deep dive into end-to-end 5G ecosystem with networks — featuring both front-haul and back-haul best solutions in “5G All Scenario Network” that is powerful, compact and green, while also enabling re-use of existing investments to build best 5G.

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