Wireless backhaul/X-Haul tech innovation is pivotal to mature 5G, says ETSI

12 December 2018 | Jason McGee-Abe

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Not-for-profit European Standards Organisation (ESO), ETSI, has published a report highlighting the critical role of appropriate regulation, licensing and technologies to ease 5G wireless backhaul/X-Haul deployments.

ETSI’s millimetre Wave Transmission Industry Specification Group (mWT ISG) has released the GR mWT 012 report, which addresses prominent 5G backhaul/X-Haul scenarios.  

ETSI, which has more than 850 member organisations worldwide, said it is of paramount importance to prepare the ground for the new backhaul/X-Haul architecture for 5G. To this end, various developments in the domains of technology, regulation and standardisation are in progress.

In reality, the microwave and millimetre wave transmission technologies satisfy the 5G "Early Stage" requirements and under a forward-looking view, innovations on wireless backhaul/X-haul technologies will continue towards 5G, focusing on capacity, latency, spectral efficiency, higher transmission distances, synchronisation and networking functionalities, so as to address the 5G "Mature Stage" requirements that will appear later.

“Mobile communication technology is evolving rapidly towards its 5G deployment phase, which aims to develop new business opportunities related to enhanced mobile broadband, ultra-reliable and low latency communications and massive machine-type communications,” the report said.

“New radio access network architecture trends, aiming at higher network efficiency and improved service delivery, are also discussed within the scope of 5G. In parallel, it is expected that 5G deployments will be characterised by increased network density, mainly driven by small cell implementation.”

As with the previous 3GPP generations, it is predicted that service providers will start with an early stage of deployment and they will progressively move towards long-term maturity, hence mobile access sites are going to be gradually upgraded to 5G configurations that will appear in different flavours and iterations of standards.

GR mWT 012 shows that microwave and millimetre wave transmission technologies, as well as their foreseen evolution in the pertinent areas of innovation, are going to continue to play a pivotal role in the 5G era as they will be fundamental pillars of service providers' network development strategy to address the future radio access demands. This view is also strengthened due to the inherent benefits of wireless backhaul/X-Haul with regard to performance, ease of deployment, fast time-to-market and cost efficiency.