Future Networks


With the transformative capabilities of 5G and RCS becoming available, operators seeking to realise the opportunities at hand must achieve economic optimisation of their networks. This will be accomplished via two principal approaches: deployment of innovative technologies and development of new commercial principles.

The GSMA’s Future Networks Programme helps the mobile industry pursue these goals as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible. Directed by 16 leading operators, it provides guidance on innovations such as network slicing, and assistance on achieving interoperability, by which emerging consumer and business demand can be met. The Programme also works to boost population coverage of high-speed broadband, reduce the capital intensity required for the rollout of 5G, and seek new ways of unlocking value from mobile networks. Through collaboration on sharing of infrastructure, improvements to radio networks, and finding alternative transmission systems, capital intensity has already been reduced by four per cent. By helping to bring down the cost of 5G’s realisation in this way, the target of making it available to a third of the world’s population by 2025 becomes achievable.

The possibilities of RCS are also being made available to millions more people: the GSMA’s Universal Profile has allowed operators to share in the economies of scale achieved, doubling launches in 2017, and are on course to do so again in 2018. Through release of Universal Profile 2.0, and the convening of multiple RCS Business Messaging Labs, the development of RCS’s capabilities has progressed sufficiently that more than 350 million monthly active users are expected by the end of 2018.

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