If Your City Isn’t a 5G Smart City, It Probably Will Be Soon

May 10

5G technology is setting the stage for every regular city to transform into a “smart city.” 5G will provide the essential services cities need to function with the utmost efficiency. Cities of all sizes will smarten up in the years ahead, regardless of whether they are small, midsize, or large.

The Transition to Smart Cities is Finally Here

Smart cities are those that rely on local government, local organizations, and businesses to function in a high-tech manner with impressive efficiency. An entire network of technologies boosts the sustainability and livability of smart cities. The collection of data pertaining to weather, the use of utilities, energy, etc. sets the stage for cities to become smarter as time progresses. This data is analyzed to improve city services and ultimately enhance quality of life.

5G mobile networks are capable of enduring potential disruptions, ultimately ensuring requirements for bandwidth, latency and reliability will be accessible for a wide array of services. This takes place on the same network through a process known as ‘network slicing’.

5G technology makes it that much easier to enhance performance along with the ability to virtually slice the network to ensure the optimal performance for a wide array of applications. This virtual partitioning is performed by mobile network operators. If a portion is down or overloaded, it will still be possible to manage certain segments independently. This strategic approach permits use cases with specific requirements for latency, security, and performance to be present on the same network. Furthermore, this approach is optimal as it enhances flexibility, empowering network operators to meet service needs as time progresses, including those not yet available in 2021. This means the stage is set for the tech to be flexible to the point that it meets service needs that have not yet been created.

The Importance of Network Slicing

Operators are now capable of enabling services for specific use cases through rightsizing mobile connectivity for each such case with several virtual networks. Each slice can be customized to the required network performance for each case. Everything from duration to security, latency, coverage, and capacity can be accounted for.

As an example, consider an emergency responder network with complex tools for communications that make it easier for responders to coordinate highly effective and timely rescues when emergencies arise. If a devastating event occurs and the city residents transmit video, pictures, and text on social media in unison, the operators of the mobile network would still be able to provide the emergency responder crew with connectivity since their network slice will not get bogged down with any public traffic.

Network Functionality

As cities become more connected and smarter, network operators will be tasked with ensuring those networks are able to meet the needs of smart city residents. SDN, meaning software-defined networking, along with network function virtualization (NFV) are essential to such virtualization. 5G will prove adaptable and even programmable from one end to the next with the use of virtual constructs. SDN is centered on physical network infrastructure abstraction that sets the stage for network actions to be altered in accordance with guaranteed service performance for specific use cases.

NFV makes it easy for network function deployment and implementation through software as opposed to purchasing, shipping, and adding actual appliances. NFV executes a wide array of virtual network functions that are not tied to a specific location. In short, if a disaster occurs, there will still be 5G mobile network accessibility for emergency responders in spite of the fact that the use of these networks often go down when civilian use increases unexpectedly.

The Smart City Age Is Not Far Away

5G’s sliced networks really do make it that much easier for operators to provide optimal data speed, network connectivity, and subsequent reliability. Your city will likely transform into a smart city within a couple of years. Even small and midsize cities will make this high-tech transition that ultimately improves quality of life for everyone.

Johannes Beekman

About the author

After 25 years in engineering, Johannes Beekman founded IoT Marketing with the goal of helping companies bring wide-scale awareness to their inventions. He received a Master of Science in Physics degree from the Eindhoven University of Technology, and a Master in Business Administration degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and started his career in the semiconductor field. Johannes pioneered two successful wafer fab startups for Philips Electronics; one in Europe and the second one in Asia. And served as Senior Program Manager for Sematech, where he provided solutions for semiconductor industry-wide product improvement and cost reduction challenges. Johannes has also published articles on several trade-focused websites.


5G smart city, 5G technology, ICT, network slicing, network virtualization, smart cities, sustainability

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}