Planning to use 5G in your organisation? Here are some things to consider

Cradlepoint Australia Pty Ltd
By Nathan McGregor, Senior Vice President Asia Pacific, Cradlepoint
Monday, 01 November, 2021


As Australia continues to navigate the dynamics of the global pandemic, one thing has emerged among the hardships of the last couple of years: business innovation is alive and thriving. In some cases, the events of the last few years have propelled organisations to think and work more creatively.

The pandemic has bubbled agility and reach to the top of the WAN capability priority list for many CIOs. Industries like agriculture, mining, retail, healthcare, construction, transport & logistics, manufacturing and more, have started to look at how technology can enable faster, more accurate and more accessible solutions and services – with 5G technology being at the heart of it.

Many organisations are planning for 5G now. Here are a few things to consider, as you look at which networking solution partners to work with.

The 5G landscape is highly diverse

5G is not one thing, but a system of changes to the communication service provider infrastructure that results in fibre-fast connections that are cellular-simple to deploy.

  1. The cellular landscape is layered

5G introduces three discrete “layers” of functionality based on the deployed spectrum. They include low-band (riding on LTE spectrum), mid-band (typically 2.5Ghz to 3.9Ghz) often considered the “Goldilocks” service that has the right balance of propagation and bandwidth, and high-capacity (often referred to as millimetre wave or mmWave) that can provide speeds from 1Gbps to 10Gbps. As you can see, each of the three spectrum layers has different performance and propagation characteristics.

  1. Operator deployment strategies vary

Most major network operators started deploying 5G in 2019. More recently in our region, some have started deploying mmWave for high capacity. Many global operators have acquired new spectrum that allows them to deploy more of the mid-band spectrum layer, while others have leveraged their LTE spectrum to roll out a low-band 5G service and gain national coverage. Each operator is aggressively growing their deployments based upon their unique strategies.

  1. Organisations have distributed needs

Organisations with multiple locations will have sites and vehicles across all of these diverse circumstances. Some will have lean IT support, some will need to leverage current investments, and others will want to buy future investment protection.

  1. 5G use cases are expanding

The killer app for 5G is the apps enterprises have deployed today. It’s clear that today’s IT environments include more videos, more rich applications, and more data-intensive use cases (such as Windows and mobile updates). Additionally, organisations are expanding “beyond the branch” and beyond wires to reach new users in more remote use cases, including mobile care, temporary stores, interactive self-help stations, and digital signs. Businesses want primary wireless and wireless failover for larger sites. In addition, the trend of expanded connectivity and growing bandwidth requirements is not letting up. New applications based on HD streaming, real-time diagnostics, robotics, and AI-assisted video in vehicles are becoming reality, and 5G will be critical to enabling them.

Next-Generation 5G Connectivity Requires clean-slate 5G routers

Rather than adding a 5G modem into a 4G architecture, next-gen 5G routers address the unique challenges of higher throughput, power dissipation, signal acquisition, and installation with a clean-slate design for an optimised 5G experience.

5G Wireless WANs require more than a modem

Deploying a national or global, enterprise-class 5G wireless WAN (WWAN) requires much more than just a 5G modem. Network operations teams demand complete lifecycle management, including zero-touch deployment, assessing performance against SLAs, ongoing monitoring at scale, and remote troubleshooting of a 5G site.

Manage at scale

It's one thing to provide connectivity for one or two locations; it is quite another to provide enterprise-class security and monitoring to tens of thousands of endpoints with a lean IT staff. And adding 5G-specific analytics is frosting on the layer cake.

Streamline the 5G solutions

Ensure your preferred 5G solutions are designed to work with any third-party router. Ask your vendor on how they handle fully integrated life cycle management experience and optimised performance.

Make great connections with finely tuned 5G endpoints

Ensure your vendor is working closely with major carriers to test and tune its solutions to their 5G networks. Pre-programmed endpoints and multi-level integrity tests that predict vulnerable connections provide the best connectivity available. Within the APAC region, Cradlepoint launched our 5G solutions with Telstra in Australia last year and our latest 5G solutions work on all major carrier networks in the country.

To nurture a growing and vibrant local 5G ecosystem, Cradlepoint is also one of a number of global industry partners working with Ericsson and Singtel, as part of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop advanced 5G enterprise solutions in Singapore. The MoU will utilise test facilities and capabilities to innovate solutions and scale them for global deployment.

The business case for 5G comes from evolving existing WWAN applications and enabling new and immersive technologies. 5G wireless edge solutions are poised to help every organisation and industry change how business is done, for years to come.

Find out more about Cradlepoint 5G for Business.

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