The Sphere at the Venetian resort, the huge, new, astonishing attraction in Las Vegas, wasn’t the only thing creating a major buzz in the city in late September. The annual gathering of the North American wireless communications industry, “MWC 2023,” showcased an impressive line-up of new products and services.
More on that amazing Sphere later. First, let me share several highlights of the conference.
As always, I was impressed by the hundreds of industry insiders who gathered from across the wireless ecosystem. Known as a vital venue to break news and introduce the latest wireless advances, it’s well-understood among attendees that what happens at MWC Vegas definitely does not stay in Las Vegas.
I have been in the wireless industry a long time and have attended many shows going back to the 1990s. Although the event has evolved over the years, it never disappoints, especially in terms of introducing industry breakthroughs. For example:
NTT Docomo announced a new product lineup called OREX, which stands for Open RAN Ecosystem Experience. Docomo highlighted 13 OREX partners and 7 RU vendors. Included in the list are Forward Vision clients Fujitsu Network Communications, SOLiD, and DENGYO.
Fujitsu announced it has successfully delivered its O-RAN Alliance-compliant 5G virtualized RAN solution for use in NTT Docomo’s 5G commercial network services. The solution went live in September 2023.
SOLiD and ASOCS unveiled their partnership to deliver a complete O-RAN-compliant solution for private 5G and Industrial IoT networks. The joint solution enables rapid deployment of scalable private 5G campus networks with intelligent real-time positioning using the Citizens Broadband Radio spectrum. The solution enables mission-critical Industry 4.0 transformation and is certified by the OnGo Alliance. Read the press release announcing the joint venture here.
DENGYO announced its Fusion product line of space-saving antennas that combine a mid-band massive MIMO radio+antenna unit with a traditional low/mid-band base station antenna. Massive MIMO technology promises to greatly improve the data throughput and capacity of the 5G Radio Access Network.
When I saw these solutions in person, I concluded there is little room for any doubt that the wireless industry is rapidly advancing. The Wow Factor was everywhere!
And it wasn’t limited to inside the convention hall. Outside, Vecta Labs grabbed attention with its huge, 18-wheel Mobile Testing Lab parked in a nearby lot. A friendly team of experts from the company was on hand to give visitors an up-close look at its precision technology. Having achieved several “firsts” in the cellular industry, Vecta’s “showcase-on-wheels” highlighted its testing services for cellular/mobile RF path devices, antennas, and active antenna systems.
Thought Leadership on Full Display
Trilogy NextGen’s Varun Vashisht was among the most insightful speakers at the conference. As the company’s VP of Sales and Strategy, Vashisht shared his extensive knowledge about Private 4G/5G, heralded as the next stage in the evolution of networking. He said it will be especially important for mission-critical applications used in factories, logistics centers, hospitals, and other enterprise environments. Not surprisingly, he noted, 5G will be the key to successful private networks in manufacturing facilities that use automation and robotics.
Globalstar CEO Dr. Paul Jacobs talked about global private 5G connectivity as a solution to solving problems of connectivity in challenging environments. He said opening up spectrum for private use has been one of the drivers for enterprise customers as they contemplate using 5G in their networks. However, there are challenges, including interference risk, capacity efficiency, maintaining costs, and other obstacles that must be considered when deploying in dense, complex wireless environments. Globalstar’s terrestrial spectrum, Band 53/n53, offers carriers, cable companies, and system integrators a versatile, fully licensed channel with a growing ecosystem that enables better customer connectivity. The breakthrough has created quite a buzz in the wireless industry.
And speaking of buzz, the city’s new entertainment venue, the Sphere, was a big topic among MWC attendees. In between listening to experts and watching product demos, I took the time to visit the incredible structure, which is located just off the Las Vegas Strip. It is the largest spherical building in the world, seats 18,600 people, and features 1.2 million hockey-puck-sized exterior LED lights programmed to display astonishing images.
Those images include an eyeball, a basketball, and even Earth itself. My favorite was an emoji, so I’ll conclude with one.
👍 to MWC Las Vegas 2023!
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