. home.aspx

NEWS

home.aspx
   


3GPP Postpones 5G Standardization for IIoT & Low Latency

March 26, 2020 / AJINKYA BAGADE
SHARESHARESHARE

  • Release 16 and Release 17 have both been pushed back three months.

  • All in-person meetings since February to limit the spread of the coronavirus and announced that meetings scheduled for June will now be held remotely.

  • Release 16 is considered crucial for multiple industries and applications because it will formalize standards for ultra-reliable low-latency communication (URLLC).


Global standardization body 3GPP is delaying the adoption of a pair of critical releases for 5G specifications. Release 16 and Release 17 have both been pushed back three months, despite claims from leadership earlier this month that the original deadlines would be met.


The association has canceled all in-person meetings since February to limit the spread of the coronavirus and announced that meetings scheduled for June will now be held remotely. The group’s various committees and working groups rely heavily on face-to-face meetings that occur on a monthly or quarterly basis around the world.


COVID-19 is causing an avalanche of delays and disruption throughout the mobile industry, but 3GPP was already behind schedule well before the pandemic hit. When Release 15 was finalized in June 2018, 3GPP planned to complete Release 16 by the end of 2019.


The three stages of standardization outlined for Release 16 won’t be finalized until June, according to 3GPP’s new timeline, and additional work intended to improve radio access network (RAN) performance will occur before the end of the year. Release 16 is considered crucial for multiple industries and applications because it will formalize standards for ultra-reliable low-latency communication (URLLC).



READ MORE: The role of bss in the journey to 5G monetization


5G Factory Use Cases Delayed


Among industry verticals, manufacturing stakeholders will be watching 3GPP’s timeline to gauge when certain feature sets will be standardized. Those interested in the URLLC capabilities, which can support things like automated robotic-based manufacturing, are likely to be delayed commercially.

- Patrick Filkins, senior research analyst, Network Infrastructure Group, IDC


However, Filkins doesn’t think 3GPP’s delay on Release 16 will significantly impact enterprise adoption of 5G. “5G coverage is just picking up in many regions. As such, even if Release 16 was not delayed, many enterprises who wish to work with carriers to begin 5G trials and pre-commercial deployments would still need to wait for coverage to start,” he said.


In addition to features of importance to industrial IoT, Release 16 will also extend 5G New Radio (NR) equipment to operate in unlicensed spectrum. Release 17, which includes standardization work on NR multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO), RAN slicing, and convergence of wireline and wireless 5G, and dozens of other enhancements, is now scheduled to be completed by the end of 2021.


It is sometimes better to delay than push a standard which does not include features the service providers want. The fixed-mobile convergence aspect and non-3GPP core features remain of high importance to many service providers, and which have negatively impacted trial timelines.

- Patrick Filkins, senior research analyst, Network Infrastructure Group, IDC


3GPP said it will hold its next plenary meetings, scheduled for the third week of June, remotely and it plans to finalize standardization of Release 16 Stage 3 before the end of June.


READ MORE: Covid-19 pandemic forces experts to emphasize on 5G & edge computing


Read More