5G Is Looming, but Network Innovations Are Needed Far More Urgently


Nokia’s Bell Labs’ R&D unit published a report this week warning that the capacity of mobile and Wi-Fi networks is not growing nearly quickly enough to satisfy the rise in that demand, especially when it comes to content and video. Of course, such a conclusion, coming from an equipment vendor, is predictable and self-serving, but nonetheless, Bell Labs’ figures are compelling.

It calculates that, by 2020, Wi-Fi and cellular networks, taken together, will be able to carry just 81 per cent of the projected mobile con-tent traffic, leaving almost one-fifth of demand unsatisfied. “Network operators will need to accelerate their path to 5G and cloud technologies, such as network functions virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networking (SDN), and adopt new business models to address the demand gap,” Nokia said.

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