Nokia, the Finnish network equipment supplier, has demonstrated how a refined version of LTE could help carriers transition to 5G networks. In order to properly demonstrate what it calls the 4.9G technology, the company used its AirScale Base Station, which is a radio site solution offered by Nokia for different types of networks that utilize technologies ranging from 2G to 5G. While carriers are still waiting for 5G standards to be finalized, Nokia hopes that its solution could help them in the deployment of 5G technologies through offering solutions that decrease the latency of wireless networks close to the figures required by 5G standards. According to the equipment supplier, its solution could deliver network latency figures as low as 2 milliseconds. In order to achieve low network latency, Nokia designed a technology that allows the transmission time intervals to be reduced by up to 86%. By reducing the intervals between data transmission, the data moves faster across the networks, resulting in reduced latencies.
This network solution, according to Nokia, would be useful in urban areas where there is currently high demands for mobile data. While it is likely that the 5G technology will be first deployed in urban areas, it is important to keep the quality of service the carrier offers to its subscribers in areas with high data consumption. As network latency improves, carriers could benefit from their enhanced network in two ways. First, carriers will benefit from the enhanced customer experience its network could now deliver since reduced latency positively affects the subscribers' perception of data speeds. Second, carriers could offer solutions for enterprise customers that will take advantage of the network's reduced latency.
Aside from offering enhanced versions of LTE, Nokia is also developing solutions for 5G networks. Last February, Nokia announced a new solution called 5G First. The said technology allows the carriers to utilize early specifications of 5G networks through a combination of radio access networks, packet core, and mobile transport solutions. In addition, the company has been working with carriers in order to test the design and deployment configurations of its 5G solutions. Recently, Nokia worked with Finnish wireless carrier Elisa to test 5G network solutions on 3.5GHz band.