3GPP completes first 5G NR specification

3GPP completes first 5G NR specification

Troy Powers
December 24, 2017

"We believe this is a meaningful industry collaboration bringing global 5G players together", said Jinhyo Park, EVP, Head of ICT R&D Center, SK Telecom.

Plenary Meeting in Lisbon, the release "is an essential milestone to enable cost-effective and full-scale development of 5G NR, which will greatly enhance the capabilities of 3GPP systems, as well as facilitate the creation of vertical market opportunities", stated a joint press release from the world's leading mobile telecommunications companies, which are pushing for accelerated 5G standards development and deployment. "This timely finalization of NSA is one important step on that journey and in the development of the 5G ecosystem". This mode will be a cornerstone of 5G in the early years of adoption as mobile carriers introduce network compatibility. And that is something worth celebrating this holiday season!

5G specs are scheduled to be approved in June 2018. At the Workshop, over 500 companies, including Qualcomm, contributed 70+ presentations on visions for 5G requirements. It's the first 5G specification to be ratified.

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Getting here was not always easy, and we definitely took some twists and turns - the usual business of building consensus in broad organizations dealing with technology (learn more about the way 3GPP work here). "We succeeded in demonstrating the 5G global standard so we have become able to take the initiative in the commercialization of the technology by using this equipment in Euljiro and Bundang".

The ratification is a little ahead of the long-term schedule, which only had 5G NR scheduled to be finished next year. To address the ever-increasing global demand for mobile broadband that will drive a 30x growth in mobile data traffic from 2014 to 2020 (source: Nokia Bell Labs Consulting Report, 2016). "As a prime contributor to 5G standardization, Ericsson has worked with industry partners in the evolution of mobile technology to a global network platform for consumers and enterprises". But what do "Non-Standalone" and "Standalone" actually mean? Today, 3GPP has set the specifications for 5G equipment in both towers and smartphones alike.

We also defined a framework to ensure commonality between these two variants. The NSA and SA releases share the same physical layers specifications and thus we expect NSA hardware equipment to be forward compatible with the SA standard once it's been finalized next year.