With the digital economy growing and becoming ubiquitous, nearly 80% of the 5G traffic is generated in the indoor environment. Furthermore, 5G allows Communications Service Providers (CSPs) to offer innovative use cases, like online gaming, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), smart factory and telemedicine, among others, which demand superior indoor coverage. It is then imperative that the CSPs ensure improved indoor coverage and experience as digital networks stimulate continuous traffic growth and support business diversification in vertical industries.
Trends for Indoor Target Network in 5G era
- From coverage-oriented to experience-oriented
As our dependency on communication networks grows, there is an urgent need to reimagine the indoor experience strategy adopted by the telcos. The inferior quality indoor experience not only impacts the uptake of the services but also leads to churn.
As personal services become mobile, HD, and diversified, the requirements for gigabit network capabilities have expanded from hotspots to all scenarios, including subways, railway stations, airports, and stadiums. 5G gigabit capabilities with universal continuous coverage are required as the basis. 5G allows service providers to go beyond traditional voice and data services. The telcos must evolve from coverage orientation to experience orientation as the customer requirements evolve with 5G.
- From adding module for more bands to adding bands without adding more modules
With the continuous development of MBB networks, global operators have obtained more and more spectrum resources. In addition, multiple spectrums make network construction difficult, and indoor scenarios face difficulties such as admission permission. Similar to outdoor scenarios, the simplified deployment of multi-RAT and multi-band integration must be considered to meet the ultimate experience of indoor users.
Even as the service providers acquire new capabilities to improve the indoor experience, to maximize the full potential of the spectrum resources, it is a good idea to deploy high integrated module with selected bands but not with all the bands. And of course, energy efficiency is also an important factor. The telcos must adopt more sustainable practices and transition from the conventional strategy of adding modules for more bands to adding bands without adding more modules.
- From one network with one usage to one network for multi-services
The growing device diversity, including the growing number of IoT devices, further adds to the challenge. The indoor coverage now must meet the growing demand for massive Internet of Things, extreme reliability and availability besides high speed and low latency. The new use cases like warehouse management, smart parking and unmanned logistics have put more requirement on network and equipment.
“Positioning has become a rigid need for digital and intelligent transformation of the industry. Compared with traditional indoor positioning technology, 5G positioning has inherent advantages. In the practice of 5G fully connected factories, it can be seen that from the initial stage of Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Ultra-Wide Broadband multiple positioning overlay to 5G positioning. Multi-dimensional capabilities such as uplink experience, full-scenario positioning, and hundreds of billions of passive IoT brought by digital 5G networks will become the cornerstone of the development of the smart world, helping industries accelerate digitalization and releasing new 5G business opportunities.” says Eric Bao.
Digital Indoor System Innovating to Meet the Diversified Indoor 5G Requirements
“The development of indoor networks presents three major trends: gigabit experience, green and simple, and multi-function in one network. Digitalization has become an inevitable choice for 5G indoor network construction,” says Eric Bao, President of Huawei’s Digital Indoor System (DIS) Product Line.
Elaborating on these trends, Eric Bao says, “The industry has moved from a “community-centric” technology route to a “user-centric” ubiquitous gigabit technology route. Huawei’s Distributed Massive MIMO technology has brought a four-fold increase in network capacity, opened up a new direction for indoor 5G user perception and network capacity evolution, and has helped global operators deploy in various scenarios on a large scale, becoming the standard for ubiquitous gigabit experience.”
Huawei has been at the forefront of helping CSPs provide exceptional network experience to their customers. For instance, at the Saudi LEAP exhibition 2023, operator Zain through Huawei’s LampSite and Distributed Massive MIMO, demonstrated the ultimate experience of downlink 3Gbps speed based on 200MHz in the exhibition hall. Further, in 2022, the Queen Sirikit National Convention and Exhibition Center in Thailand demonstrated a 1.1Gbps ubiquitous gigabit experience based on 80MHz.
“Huawei LampSite continues to innovate and builds leading competitiveness. From the release of the industry’s first 4/5G integrated module to the LampSite 5.0 solution, 3G/4G/5G multi-band and multi-standard integration meets most mainstream frequency band demand scenarios. The highly integrated design achieves a 25% reduction in weight and volume; in terms of power consumption, with the help of hardware capabilities improvement and pRRU deep dormancy feature, the pRRU power consumption can drop from the original 10 watts to 1 watt, and the power consumption of the entire station is reduced by 40%.” says Eric Bao.
“For single-operator scenarios, Huawei LampSite Pro adopts a full-band and full-bandwidth design with the highest integration in the industry and supports Sub3G+C-Band. LampSite Sharing solution supports multi-operator co-building and sharing, and has the industry’s only 400M C-Band (3400~3800MHz) ultra-large bandwidth.
Further, to meet the diversified requirements of toB business scenarios, Huawei LampSite EE (Enterprise Edition) provides IoT, large uplink, and meter-level positioning capabilities. Further, Huawei DIS will also superimpose the 800MHz millimeter wave capability on the pRRU of 1.8G+C-Band. The domestic actual measurement can reach 10Gbps, supporting the future 5.5G 10 Gigabit experience.
A case in point is Jingzhou Midea’s 5G Fully Connected Factory, which won the GSMA GLOMO award in 2023 in the category of “5G Industry Challenge Award in collaboration with the GSMA 5G Hub,” a tripartite cooperation project between Midea Group, China Mobile and Huawei.
“It uses Huawei’s DIS solution to support the connection of 2,500 5G communication points, meeting the application of 15 types of scenarios in production, logistics and other links. Uplink bandwidth can reach Gbps level, the delay is stable below 30ms (99.99% scenarios), and the network reliability reaches 99.99%, and finally realizes a 17% increase in production capacity, which has been listed in “5G Network Construction and Application Guidelines in the home appliance industry in Hubei Province,” says Eric Bao.
The industry needs innovative products, like LampSite, to help CSPs provide a truly differentiated user experience and to help enterprise customers realize their digital transformation vision. It will play a crucial role in helping CSPs grow their revenue.