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Huawei Zhu Huimin talks about 5G rhythm: technology continues to innovate and evolve, and business cycle is coming

If 2019 is the first year of 5G commercial use, and 2020 is the “acceleration period” of 5G development, then 2021 is the exploration period for the commercial scale of 5G.

With the continuous increase of operators around the world, the current global 5G network construction is considerable, and my country has taken the lead in terms of the number of base stations, business innovation, and industrial ecology. In the next step, we focus on how to realize the large-scale deployment of the commercial model and successfully replicate the lighthouse project.

5G hopes to empower thousands of industries, but thousands of industries have their own characteristics, and the network requirements are not exactly the same. If they serve enterprises in the same way as serving C-end consumers, operators will not be able to afford 5G network construction expenses. Therefore, in the process from “1” to “n”, how to skillfully realize the personalized needs of toB users and realize a positive business cycle is an urgent problem for operators to solve.

To meet the differentiated connection needs of individuals and industries, Huawei continues to innovate 5G solutions and build high-quality 5G networks together with operators. At the recent Huawei Analyst Conference, Zhu Huimin, Vice President of Huawei Wireless Marketing, once again explained the innovative concept of Huawei’s “1+N” 5G target network in detail, responded to some current misunderstandings about 5G, and analyzed the expected pace of 5G development.

01. China’s 5G leads the world and shares industrial dividends with the world

In recent years, the global 5G network has been constructed at a high speed, and 5G development has entered the fast lane. From the perspective of global data, the overall development of 5G in my country is higher than expected.

First, the number of 5G sites is leading. As of February 2021, more than 140 5G commercial networks have been deployed worldwide, and in the past year, Chinese operators have built the world’s largest 5G network. According to Liu Liehong, Vice Minister of China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, in February this year, the cumulative investment in China’s 5G network construction has exceeded 260 billion yuan, and more than 718,000 5G base stations have been built, accounting for about 70% of the world’s total.

Second, the number of 5G users is leading. my country’s 5G users account for about 80% of the world’s 5G users. Zhu Huimin said that the number of 5G users in China is expected to exceed 350 million to 400 million this year.

Third, the number of 5G terminals is leading. The proportion of newly launched smart 5G terminals in my country accounts for 70% every year. If you also take into account the stock terminals, although there is still a certain gap between the diluted stock terminals and 20%, it can be seen that the price of several 5G flagship phones and high-end phones in the early days remained high. A 5G “entry machine” that can be purchased for as low as 1,000 yuan. In 2021, when 5G is developing rapidly, Zhu Huimin predicts that my country’s 5G mobile phone shipments will reach 280 million.

Regarding the remarks about the slowdown of 5G network construction, Zhu Huimin believes that the number of 5G base stations in China needs to reach the level of 4G network coverage, and there is still a distance of “several million base stations”.

“China is very decisive in the construction of 5G networks. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology once said that ‘5G construction should be moderately advanced’. In fact, 5G “aligns” 4G also requires more base stations. On the whole, I expect 5G base stations this year. The number will exceed the original construction target of 600,000.” Zhu Huimin said.

02. 5GtoC changes lives virtually

With the increasing number of 5G base stations, the public’s expectations for 5G have also increased. This also makes some users think that 5G and 4G are not much different, and they do not have much perception of 5G networks and 5G services. But in fact, 5G is already quietly changing our daily habits.

According to Huawei’s statistics, the usage time of 5G users in video services, social media services, and game services with relatively high ARPU has increased by 16%. It can be said that this is a very impressive value.

For example, in the short video business, WeChat Moments can only share 8 seconds of videos in the past, but now they can share 30 seconds. In the 4G era, some people think that this kind of thing will not happen at all, and even think that it is impossible for videos longer than 8 seconds to be successful. Of course, it turns out that this conclusion is based on data network predictions, or according to the current proportion of users sharing 30-second videos. From the point of view of the gradual increase, it is all wrong.

In addition to the increase in seconds, the video quality is constantly being optimized. From the perspective of high-definition video ratio, compared with the 4G era, the 5G era video 1080P ratio has increased from far below 5% to 30%. For operators, this is a welcome change – the increase in these ratios is an opportunity to realize ARPU value growth and DOU growth.

After all, in the early stage of 5G construction, the industry believes that 5G will become an important starting point for operators to return to the golden age, so as to seek new business growth points.

In the 5GtoC field, creating more 5G innovative content (augmented reality AR, virtual reality VR, high-definition video) can not only attract more consumers to upgrade 5G packages, but also bring explosive growth in traffic and promote the ARPU value of 5G users Rapid improvement brings more profits to operators.

It can be said that 5G has brought us into a better video era. Zhu Huimin believes that this is also destined to be the development direction of 5G in the future.

“Our live broadcast used to be of sharing type, but now more live broadcast economy has been launched. If you go to any shopping mall, you will see a booth doing live broadcast. The live broadcast must be done on a mobile phone and indoors, but where can you find an Internet port indoors? These are all It is the key insight that 5G super uplink or 5G capability will drive the live broadcast economy.” Zhu Huimin said that the live broadcast capability deployment under the new 5G application is better, and after the uplink capability has an experience of more than 100Mbps, the live broadcast economy will also be driven.

Similarly, 5G promotes the development of ultra-high-definition video, and also promotes the popularization of AR/VR applications in smart terminals. At present, the XR terminal form is basically mature, XR glasses weighing less than 100g and realizing all-weather accessories have been mass-produced, and the price is expected to drop to 2,000 yuan. At the same time, Huawei Hetu 5G+AR, VR/AR education, AR retail, VR/AR games and other XR application scenarios are growing rapidly, and 5G has brought new development momentum to the video industry.

03. China’s 5GtoB has begun to replicate on a large scale, but the pain points remain

In addition to the C-end, the ability of 5G to empower vertical industries is more anticipated. In the toB field, the current 5G capability basically meets about 80% of the scenario requirements, especially around the large uplink capability, indoor high-precision positioning, and local low-latency scenarios. 5G can provide the industry with basic common capabilities and help the industry’s digital transformation. .

Take Huawei as an example. Last year, Huawei and operators tried many industries in the 5GtoB field, and more than 5,000 projects have been launched in 2020. Among these projects, about 1,000 have signed commercial contracts, involving a wide range of industries, especially critical ones. In the steel, coal mining, power manufacturing and other industries, the contract value has reached about 1.2 billion US dollars.

Some people think that for operators, 1.2 billion US dollars may seem inconspicuous, but in fact, as far as the current situation is concerned, this amount is also far more than expected. Although in the manufacturing field, 5G deployments in various factories, coal mines, power grids, steel, chemical, medical, and industrial parks have basically achieved 1-to-N replication.

However, Zhu Huimin believes that there are still such and other problems to be solved in the industry toB. From three levels, it is probably: the industrial ecology can be supported, the business model can be implemented, and the application scenarios can be adapted. Zhu Huimin believes that among these three points, Huawei’s most subjective initiative is the adaptability of application scenarios.

“Huawei has not yet reached the bottleneck stage in terms of network capabilities and solutions, but when it comes to deployment, due to cost issues, it must be deployed on demand. And enterprise users are a fragmented market. From the perspective of public network applications, low time Extension, large uplink, high reliability, etc. all rely on the ability of planning, construction, maintenance, and optimization regardless of cost. strength.” Zhu Huimin said.

04. “1+N” provides full-band, full-scenario 5G solutions

So, how can we ensure that the cost is controllable and the network needs of various users? Huawei has launched the “1+N” solution, that is, “1” medium-frequency large network with continuous coverage, “N” dimensional capability, and on-demand deployment.

For the construction of the “1+N” 5G target network, we see that Huawei has continued to innovate around multi-antenna technology to improve 5G network coverage and experience, and improve 5GtoB solutions such as high reliability, large uplink, and low latency. Build, maintain, and optimize” service capabilities to realize the social value of 5G.

Specifically, Massive MIMO is a key technology for realizing the 5G cross-generation experience. Since its first commercial use in 2018, Huawei’s 5G Massive MIMO products have been leading the industry. Up to now, Huawei’s 5G Massive MIMO products have been deployed in more than one million stations.

Zhu Huimin said that based on ten years of research and accumulation, Huawei has made a lot of technological breakthroughs in various fields of wireless RAN networks, introducing multi-antenna technology into every frequency band and every scene of 5G, and continuously improving 5G network coverage and experience. Let the 5G network carry more traffic, and build a wide-pipe basic network with universal coverage and equal emphasis on toC and toB services.

At the same time, the multi-antenna technology has moved from TDD to FDD to all frequency bands. In the TDD frequency band, Huawei has launched TDD M-MIMO, the industry’s lightest weight and widest bandwidth, which simplifies network site deployment and improves operators’ network construction efficiency. Applications in the FDD frequency band have gradually become mainstream. For different capacity, experience, and coverage scenarios, Huawei has launched a series of FDD NR products with multi-band 4T4R/8T8R/M-MIMO to meet the needs of customers for network construction.

Moreover, the multi-antenna technology moves from outdoor to indoor, from multi-pole to single-pole, to the whole scene. For indoor high-density scenarios, combined with multi-antenna technology, Huawei launched the industry’s exclusive distributed Massive MIMO solution to achieve indoor gigabit experience; for scenarios with limited aerial space, Huawei launched the industry’s first 32T/64T-based BladeAAU Pro solution , a single pole to achieve the ultimate performance.

Additionally, algorithms are key to maximizing Massive MIMO capabilities. Through the long-term accumulation of Massive MIMO system research and development, Huawei has launched the industry’s most powerful AHR (Adaptive High Resolution) algorithm. Through accurate channel estimation, the accuracy of beamforming is improved, and the relationship between SU-MIMO and MU-MIMO is greatly improved. performance, to achieve a significant improvement in user experience and cell capacity.

05. 5.5G is an enhancement of 5G, not hype

At present, the 5G industry has entered a four-in-one development state in which “network, user, terminal, and business” promote each other, in a positive cycle.

On the one hand, the gradually mature terminal ecology and falling terminal prices make users choose 5G terminals naturally during the replacement process, prompting operators to continue to improve the coverage of 5G networks. On the other hand, the cross-generational experience of 5G network stimulates the emergence of innovative services. Individual users will consume several times the traffic during the experience process. Industry connections require large uplinks, low latency, and high reliability, which also promotes 5G network capabilities. Continuous enhancement and evolution.

However, while 5G is developing rapidly, some people still question the 5.5G proposed by Huawei. In fact, 5.5G is not hype, and 5G is not developed by hype. 5G is a ten-year rule, and each generation has key technologies that reduce the cost per bit by 10 times. Looking back at the development process of mobile communication technology, the half-generation technology of 2G is GPRS, not 2.5G; 3G is HSPA, which opened the era of mobile Internet, and 4.5G is called LTE Advanced Pro. And 5.5G is not a replacement for 5G, 5.5G is an enhancement of 5G.

Of course, half-generation technology cannot be achieved overnight, and it takes a certain amount of time to establish both standards and industrial ecology.

Epilogue

From the history of mobile communication development in the past, we can find that all visions need to be seen before they can be gradually realized. The commercial success of 5GtoC and toB is not only a technical issue. In the process of industry digitization, industry standards, a complete end-to-end industrial ecology, and a business model suitable for this industry are required. Through various attempts, we hope that this year, leading industries can achieve 5GtoB scale replication as soon as possible, and make good use of the new opportunities brought by 5G to the digitalization of the industry.