As 5G use cases begin to shed light on the sheer scale of 5G potential, network operators must prepare their networks

Network operators must prepare for a surge in demand for edge-based applications, as the global telecoms sector looks ahead to the rollout of 5G services in the coming years.

Speaking exclusively to Total Telecom, Red Hat’s VP for Communications Service Providers, Darrell Jordan-Smith, said that 5G use cases were increasingly highlighting the importance of edge-based capabilities.  

"I don’t think anyone has worked out what the ideal situation looks like yet – or a comprehensive list of all the different use cases. We hear a lot about things like autonomous cars but there are other really interesting ones out there too," he said.

"In China for example, the government in Beijing have every corner of the city covered by street cameras and the facial recognition technology that they are using knows exactly who you are. Just by the fact that you scanned your passport when you entered the country, the software can identify you. All of the data analytics for that happens at the edge of the network. You can then scale that out."

"For example, in China, if you are from a certain city then you are eligible for free healthcare in that province – if you are from outside that area then you need to pay. The facial recognition technology can tell instantly who is eligible to receive free health care and who has to pay. That is being done at the edge, today. As they begin to expand that over 5G networks, you suddenly realise just how many applications and services could potentially make use of that data.

You can read our full, in-depth interview with Darrell Jordan-Smith, right here.