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5G Network - a user's perspective
September 12, 2017 | By Abdulaziz Khan @ Mobily
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We are pleased to share with you all an interesting article contributed by Abdul Aziz Khan who is a Telecom Professional having more than 18 years of diverse Telecom Experience of Planning, Project Management, Optimization and Operations, he is currently working in Network Optimization team of Mobily KSA.


Abdulaziz Khan

Technical Consultant at Mobily



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User satisfaction is not easy to understand when it comes to network technologies because of underlying limits of different RATs (Radio Access Technologies) and the capabilities of the user device and too many other factors, below is a small table to introduce you to different RATs and user device capabilities:


There are some interesting things to notice in the above table, technology is evolving approximately after every 10 years; so even though how much good we talk about 5G it is deemed to be replaced after 10 years. Secondly the data requirements are increasing manifolds, which is now hitting some physical characteristics of the material, for example you cannot go beyond the speed of light so you need some drastic change to overcome the physical barrier hence it is possible that in the coming decade we see some big telecom revolution as the normal path of advancement will not be possible.


The smart phones are really smart devices as they can switch between RATs, also they can seamlessly switch the data traffic to WiFi as and when available, however it depends firstly on the type of device that you are holding and how you have configured it, secondly it depends on what kind of network you are connected to and how it is configured to handle different situations, for example, you may be connected to a 4G network through a smart phone but it is possible that the network has not allowed your device to be served by the 4G network but by the 3G network so even though you are connected to a 4G network but your experience will not be good as the service you are getting is not 4G but 3G.


Also note that a lot of users in the world do not have a device capable of connecting to the new 4G and 5G technologies so for them all this debate is irrelevant, that is why developed countries like Australia and some European countries are going to turn off their 2G network and use the frequency spectrum for 4G and 5G to get the most of the precious resource.


After this “Small” introduction let us move forward to our topic of 5G user perspective, if you see in the first table about the capabilities of 4G and 5G then you will feel that 4G is still not bad and 5G may be a bit overkill for your current data requirements.


If you are a “Normal” user who mobile usage is not more than his WiFI usage then 5G or even 4G may not be for you, however for the people who are always on the go and they need to remain heavily connected regardless of the connectivity is through Mobile or WiFi; they are the ones who need 5G more than anyone else.


Also considering the new advancements, like safe cities, connected cars, Internet of Things (IoT), these technologies heavily depend upon being connected, even though none of these technologies may need a 1Gbps direct connection but due to the density of the devices in a geographical area, the accumulated traffic in that geographical area will soon hit the roof and 5G is more than inevitable for them, the only problem is the business case, currently the mobile network is the costliest thing in the whole picture but how they are going to make money from all this is a big question mark.


So, as a conclusion 5G may not be relevant for some users and it may be the issue of life and death for some users, depending on where are you positioned on your technology based requirements, if you are someone like Uber or Careem who is eyeing on connected cars to lower its operational expenditure then an early arrival of 5G will make your life easy but if you are a solitary mobile user who is eagerly waiting for the re-launch of Nokia 3310 to go back in your nostalgia then this debate is not for you.

Abdul Aziz Khan 2017-09-17 13:08:01

Very nice and well articulated

kuldeepin 2017-09-28 20:39:15

In first table Bandwidth is worngly mentioned , pleas correct that.

That should be Downlink Speed.


Also MIMO is not the technlogy for 5G . From 3G MIMO is there.

For 5G we are going to utilize Massive MIMO and beam forming aggresively though beam forming also will be used in 4.5G .




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