5G telecom vendors — like the 5G telecom carriers profiled in a Sept. 9 eDigest story — are stepping up their green initiatives to meet the power-hungry demands of 5G base stations, which can consume up to three times more power than 4G and LTE networks.
Telecom manufacturers such as Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung and Huawei have invested heavily in green energy programs during the last few years.
“Can we rollout 5G and reduce energy consumption?” Ericsson asks on its Twitter page. “The answer is yes. It is possible to break the energy curve. We see this as an opportunity to rethink how to build, operate and manage networks in a smarter and more strategic way. It is not only an option it is an industry responsibility. The report presents how to reduce energy consumption of mobile networks, as well as solutions to manage mobile broadband traffic growth including 5G roll-outs.”
Ericsson estimates the global energy cost of running mobile networks is about $25 billion yearly, making energy consumption one of the wireless industry’s biggest challenges — Huawei from both cost and carbon footprint perspectives.
A supporter of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and an active member of the Exponential Roadmap initiative, Ericsson has invested in solar power and other alternative energies. According to an Ericsson blog written by Saud Saya, site product and portfolio director at business area networks, “Ericsson acknowledges the energy challenges, costs and associated emissions that our industry is currently facing and is playing a leading role in addressing them through site products and solution innovations. These include industry best practices and designs, which enable service providers to build and deploy 5G with safety, simplicity and cost effectiveness front of mind.”
Meanwhile, Nokia’s website says the company is on a journey to a greener world. “Our aim is that every new product is more energy efficient than the previous model,” the website reads. “Nokia is using renewable energy in its own operations wherever available. For example, our operations in Finland are powered 100 percent by renewable energy sources.”
Nokia’s website features this statement: “80 percent of a mobile network’s energy is consumed by base station sites. Mobile operators report an increase of 10 to 30 percent annually in mobile network energy use. For example, the addition of LTE to existing GSM/WCDMA base station sites accounts for a 20 percent increase in energy consumption. Nokia’s zero emission site can cut the energy consumption of such sites by 70 percent.”
In July 2021, Aron Heller, lead writer and editor at Nokia Cloud and Network Services, posted an article discussing the importance of sustainability in the 5G market. “The telecom industry has had a long reputation of being wasteful,” the article reads. “But as climate change continues to worsen, sustainability has become a major corporate driving force with companies investing heavily in boosting productivity without further taxing the planet. Judging by revenue, more than a third of the mobile industry has already credibly committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 or before.”
Meanwhile, Samsung has a won a number of the EPA’s Energy Star program awards, including the 2020 Energy Star Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence Award for continued leadership and superior contributions to the EPA’s Energy Star program. The award recognizes EPA partner businesses and organizations in good standing that demonstrate superior leadership, innovation, and commitment to environmental protection through energy efficiency and Energy Star.
Samsung, which manufacturers most of its products domestically in South Korea, has closer ties to the United States than its European rivals Nokia and Ericsson — both of which have significant manufacturing operations in China. Furthermore, Samsung purchases 100 percent renewable energy in the United States,
In July 2021, Samsung launched its SmartThings Energy, a new service within its app that allows consumers to take control of their energy consumption with monitoring, target-setting and notifications of its Samsung appliances and HVAC systems. By improving consumers’ household energy IQ, SmartThings Energy has the power to reduce monthly energy bills and contribute to a lower carbon footprint.
“People are spending more time at home and using their appliances more frequently, driving a need for larger capacity and better energy efficiency,” said Chanwoo Park, vice president and head of IoT business group at Samsung Electronics. “Our consumers want to be part of building a better, more ecofriendly tomorrow, and we are proud to help them achieve that vision by offering a more energy-efficient smart home experience.”
Huawei International, a China-based multinational designer and developer of telecommunications equipment and consumer electronics, said it is “working to build a greener, better and smarter world.” On Aug, 27, Huawei said it gathered the sharpest minds and impactful voices at Huawei Digital Power Summit 2021 Singapore to engage in conversations on creating a future where energy and technological innovation go hand in hand to create a sustainable ecosystem. Foo Fang Yong, CEO of Huawei International, said, “Huawei will mark its 20th anniversary in Singapore with core products and initiatives designed to push industry standards, systems integration and more.”
Terry Gao, managing director of Huawei Digital Power Singapore, said, “Like many nations across the globe, Singapore has outlined its future roadmap towards net-zero emissions, and Huawei’s commitment to energy transformation will play a pivotal role. A significant component of this transformation is made possible with digitalization. For digitization to be successful, we need more efficient data centers to be powered sufficiently and reliably. The establishing of Huawei Digital Power will allow Singapore to push ahead with more support as power digitalization takes shape.”
Mike Harrington is a contributing editor.
Samsung Electronics has developed a C-Band network solutions portfolio to help U.S. mobile operators deliver advanced 5G service in the mid-band spectrum. According to information disclosed by the company, with this line-up, operators can deliver high performance and efficiently expand the coverage of their networks, while providing enhanced 5G experiences to users in both indoor and outdoor environments.
C-Band refers to mid-band spectrum ranging from 3.7 GHz to 4.2 GHz, Samsung explained, of which a total of 280 megahertz between 3.7 GHz and 3.98 GHz was auctioned by the FCC earlier this year. The spectrum will play a critical role in helping operators provide 5G wireless communications service with high performance, advanced features and wide coverage for users in the United States. Samsung said its new C-Band portfolio includes the latest advanced radios, such as massive MIMO radio, indoor solutions and network optimization tools.
Backed by Samsung’s commercial experience delivering 5G network solutions in the mid-band spectrum in leading markets, the company offers U.S. operators a range of C-Band solutions to deliver on the promise of 5G. Samsung’s C-Band portfolio includes:
Massive MIMO radio: Samsung’s C-band massive MIMO radio has 3D beamforming and supports the auctioned spectrum range of 280 megahertz. The radio will support the latest MIMO technologies, including tripling the bandwidth capacity and doubling the output power compared with prior generations. In addition, the radio enables flexible installation for operators deploying 5G. Samsung’s C-band massive MIMO radio is commercially available, and thousands of units have already been shipped to the United States.
Outdoor radio: A compact, lightweight radio with eight antennas – which can operate in bi-sector or tri-sector modes – will be introduced as Samsung’s new 8T8R radio. By bringing greater flexibility in deployment to operators, the new radio is best suited for rural deployments. The product will be available in the second half of 2021.
Micro Radio: To address various C-band deployment environments and scenarios, Samsung is introducing a micro radio, designed for dense urban environments. Through easy installation, such as on light poles in cities, the radio will offer operators the ability to fill coverage holes and gain broader 5G coverage with more efficiency. The product will be available in early 2022.
Indoor 5G Solutions: Last year, Samsung revealed its Link portfolio, a range of 5G indoor solutions that includes Link HubPro and Link Hub. Both will be expanded to support C-band to bring 5G indoors. Samsung’s Link HubPro is an active antenna solution with indoor radios and hub, supporting scalable indoor deployment, while Samsung’s Link Hub is for places with an existing distributed antenna systems (DAS), providing coverage in public venues (i.e., offices, stadiums and shopping centers). It uses legacy passive antenna systems for fast, easy 5G upgrades. These indoor solutions will be available early 2022.
C-band Network Optimization Tools: Samsung introduces two new C-band network deployment and management solutions. First, the Earth Station Protection Solution, commercially available now, enhances C-band networks by preventing interference between a base station and a satellite earth station. Second, Samsung’s time-division duplex (TDD) interference manager is a central coordinator that manages remote interference between cells in TDD networks, enhancing the performance of the C-band network. The TDD interference manager will be available early 2022.
“Samsung is proud to help operators deploy 5G networks in the C-band spectrum with our expansive portfolio of solutions,” said Junehee Lee, executive vice president and head of research and development for networks business at Samsung Electronics. “C-Band spectrum is foundational for delivering 5G networks with high performance and wide coverage. Our complete C-Band solutions portfolio offers U.S. operators greater flexibility in 5G deployments, which will help drive new business models and opportunities.”
With Samsung’s C-band massive MIMO radio commercially available, units have been shipped for use in Verizon’s state-of-the-art network.
“Verizon has been leading the way with building our 5G Ultra Wideband service on mmWave spectrum using Samsung’s robust mmWave equipment offerings and now, by adding C-band spectrum to this portfolio, we are perfectly positioned to deploy the fastest, most powerful 5G experience to the most people – or as we call it, 5G built right,” said Adam Koeppe, senior vice president of technology planning at Verizon. “We are accelerating our deployment efforts with the support of our partners like Samsung so that our customers will see the benefits of expanding 5G Ultra Wideband service shortly after the C-band spectrum is cleared later this year.”
Bob O’Donnell, president and chief analyst at TECHnalysis Research, said that the arrival and deployment of mid-band frequencies like C-band in the U.S. market is going to lead to an explosion of 5G usage and new applications. “Samsung’s industry-leading C-band portfolio will be critical in helping operators accelerate the buildout of their 5G networks to provide enhanced 5G experiences to users, covering indoor and outdoor applications, as well as urban and rural deployments,” he said.
Samsung Networks has pioneered the successful delivery of 5G end-to-end solutions including chipsets, radios and core, according to the Samsung statement. “Through ongoing research and development, Samsung drives the industry to advance 5G networks with its market-leading product portfolio from fully virtualized RAN and Core to private network solutions and AI-powered automation tools,” the statement reads. “The company is providing network solutions to mobile operators that deliver connectivity to hundreds of millions of users around the world.”
Travelers, employees and retailers at Brazil’s São Paulo/Guarulhos International Airport (GRU) can access the world’s first at-airport Wi-Fi 6 network using OpenRoaming, according to the Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA).
“OpenRoaming provides secure, automatic and friction-free access to the Cisco-powered network that is managed by Boingo,” information disclosed by WBA reads. “The WBA OpenRoaming service will be available to travelers in GRU’s international Terminal 3, using best-of-breed Samsung Galaxy devices. With OpenRoaming, users will be able to experience the speed, power and simplicity of one of the most advanced wireless networks in the world.”
According to WBA, based on 802.11ax and featuring channels up to 160 MHz wide, Wi-Fi 6 can deliver speeds up to three times faster than 802.11 technologies. Designed for use in the 2.4, 5 and new 6 GHz bands, Wi-Fi 6 also provides greater reliability, ultra-low latency and higher network efficiency in airports, stadiums and other environments with large numbers of simultaneously connected devices. Passengers and airport employees will no longer have to log in to public Wi-Fi networks repeatedly. They will be able to enjoy a seamless experience when watching videos or gaming as they wait for flights. It will also improve consumers’ experience in the retail stores as it will allow a smoother check-out process and support back-office operations.
“The service frees travelers, airport employees and other users from the repeat registration and log-in that public Wi-Fi networks often require,” WBA said in a statement. “Instead of re-registering or re-entering log-in credentials, GRU users will enjoy the convenience of instant network access matched with enterprise-grade security. When coupled with the Wi-Fi 6 infrastructure, OpenRoaming also helps provide a carrier-grade Wi-Fi experience.”
Boingo designed, installed and manages the GRU network, which, WBA said, was the world’s first airport Wi-Fi 6 network when it launched in October 2020. Travelers have up to four hours of free access, including from their older generation Wi-Fi devices, thanks to Wi-Fi’s backward compatibility.
As WBA described it, the GRU network features a unified Wi-Fi 6 infrastructure based on Cisco Catalyst access points, controllers and switches. Samsung provided GRU operations employees with ruggedized handsets and other devices enabled with Broadcom’s W-Fi 6 chipset, enabling them to use Wi-Fi 6 to maximize productivity and responsiveness to passengers whilst different OpenRoaming identities are used to separate automatic access for GRU employees versus guests.
“GRU is South America’s busiest airport,” said Gustavo Figueiredo, GRU Airport´s CEO. “With Wi-Fi 6, our passengers and operations employees now have reliable, seamless and secure connectivity to assure a better traveling experience.”
WBA CEO Tiago Rodrigues said, “This world-class, world-first airport OpenRoaming network at GRU showcases how the WBA membership collaborates to provide consumers and business users with reliable, blazingly fast connectivity. The GRU network also highlights the critical role that OpenRoaming plays in providing people with instant, ultra-secure access to Wi-Fi networks. That peace of mind is key for continuing to build and maintain confidence in public networks.”
Derek Peterson, Ph.D., Boingo’s chief technology officer, said that the GRU installation is the latest example of Boingo’s commitment to providing cutting-edge technologies that enhance the traveler’s experience and enable airport operations staff to efficiently and effectively serve those travelers. “Boingo was the first to deploy a Wi-Fi 6 airport network, and now we’re working within the WBA to raise the bar yet again with the world’s first OpenRoaming network at an airport,” he said.
Expressing Broadcom’s perspective, Gabriel Desjardins, director of product marketing, said that Broadcom’s vision has been to accelerate critical wireless technologies to market. “We are excited to see our investments in Wi-Fi 6 and OpenRoaming enable real-world deployments that give consumers easy access to high-speed wireless networks,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of Cisco Wireless, the company’s chief technology officer, Matt MacPherson, said that the only thing faster than GRU’s Cisco-based Wi-Fi 6 network is the process of connecting with it. “WBA OpenRoaming completely transforms the user experience for travelers and airport employees by eliminating the registrations, log-ins and other traditional authentication processes and replacing them all with a secure and seamless onboarding framework.” He said. “It also opens up new opportunities for retailers in the airport, as they look to engage with travelers by creating unique digital experiences to win their business.”
Samsung Electronics’ corporate vice president and head of convergence research and development, James M. Choi, said that passengers and GRU staff will get to experience Wi-Fi like never before. “We’ve made some great strides these past few months to give users access to Wi-Fi 6 and OpenRoaming,” he said, “and this is only the beginning. Together, we’ll never cease to innovate to offer users access to secure and seamless next-level connectivity when they need it most.”
Source: Wireless Broadband Alliance
Ericsson has alleged that Samsung failed to negotiate in good faith in licensing patents in a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.
The case addresses breaches of the Fair, Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) terms and conditions obligations by Samsung and seeks to obtain a ruling by the court that Ericsson has complied with its own commitments.
The FRAND system is a fundamental building block of a rich ecosystem that has allowed global cellular connectivity to scale to more than 8 billion interoperable connections. It allows access to intellectual property, developed by contributors like Ericsson, under global mobile standards, on FRAND terms and conditions. It also rewards those contributors for their significant up-front investment in R&D in each mobile generation.
Several license renewal negotiations may delay the payment of IP royalties if they extend beyond the expiration of existing licenses into an unlicensed period. Once renewed, unpaid royalties are expected to be recovered and recognized as revenue at the time of renewal.
Current geopolitical conditions are impacting handset sales volumes as is the shift from 4G to 5G handsets. This, in combination with delayed royalty payments from unlicensed periods and potential costs of litigation, may impact Ericsson’s operating income. a quarter beginning in the first quarter 2021. The actual financial impact will depend on the timing and terms and conditions of new agreements.
The value of Ericsson’s IP portfolio extends to more than 54,000 granted patents and is strengthened by annual investment in R&D. The company plans to grow its IPR revenues long term, maximizing the value of the overall patent portfolio.
Samsung Electronics America has been selected by Verizon to assist in advancing their 4G LTE Open RAN initiative. With this collaboration, both companies are working to increase network efficiencies, advance inter-carrier interoperability, and prepare a path for virtualized RAN and 5G commercialization.
Samsung will supply Verizon with equipment including Remote Radio Heads (RRHs) and Baseband Units (BBUs). These key network elements will also support Verizon’s Open RAN initiative by allowing the ability to interwork with other ecosystem providers. All supporting equipment will continue to enable Verizon’s LTE Advanced capabilities as well as current CAT-M and future Narrow Band IoT platforms.
“We are committed to offering our customers a best-in-class network experience through enabling new technology partnerships in an open network ecosystem,” said Ed Chan, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Architect, Corporate Network & Technology, Verizon.
“Samsung is excited to support Verizon as they advance their 4G LTE network and build the next generation of wireless networks,” said Mark Louison, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Networks Division, Samsung Electronics America. “It’s imperative that we as an industry continue to engineer networks, so we can deliver unprecedented, enhanced user experiences as technologies evolve.”
Samsung Networks has been a provider of Verizon femto cells for many years. This latest agreement expands the companies’ relationship to include larger scale 4G LTE Macro gear. This includes incorporating the next generation of Samsung Baseband Units and Remote Radio Heads, with planned deployment in 2018.