5G Evolution: A View on 5G Cellular Technology Beyond 3GPP Release 15

Amitava Ghosh, Andreas Maeder, Matthew Baker, Devaki Chandramouli
2019 IEEE Access  
The 5G System is being developed and enhanced to provide unparalleled connectivity to connect everyone and everything, everywhere. The first version of the 5G System, based on the Release 15 ("Rel-15") version of the specifications developed by 3GPP, comprising the 5G Core (5GC) and 5G New Radio (NR) with 5G User Equipment (UE), is currently being deployed commercially throughout the world both at sub-6 GHz and at mmWave frequencies. Concurrently, the second phase of 5G is being standardized by
more » ... 3GPP in the Release 16 ("Rel-16") version of the specifications which will be completed by March 2020. While the main focus of Rel-15 was on enhanced mobile broadband services, the focus of Rel-16 is on new features for URLLC (Ultra-Reliable Low Latency Communication) and Industrial IoT, including Time Sensitive Communication (TSC), enhanced Location Services, and support for Non-Public Networks (NPNs). In addition, some crucial new features, such as NR on unlicensed bands (NR-U), Integrated Access & Backhaul (IAB) and NR Vehicle-to-X (V2X), are also being introduced as part of Rel-16, as well as enhancements for massive MIMO, wireless and wireline convergence, the Service Based Architecture (SBA) and Network Slicing. Finally, the number of use cases, types of connectivity and users, and applications running on top of 5G networks, are all expected to increase dramatically, thus motivating additional security features to counter security threats which are expected to increase in number, scale and variety. In this paper, we discuss the Rel-16 features and provide an outlook towards Rel-17 and beyond, covering both new features and enhancements of existing features. 5G Evolution will focus on three main areas: enhancements to features introduced in Rel-15 and Rel-16, features that are needed for operational enhancements, and new features to further expand the applicability of the 5G System to new markets and use cases. INDEX TERMS 5G new radio, 5G core, 5G system, non-public network, industrial IoT, time sensitive communication, ultra-reliable low-latency communications, integrated access and backhaul, converged edge and core clouds, positioning, NR-unlicensed, non-terrestrial network.
doi:10.1109/access.2019.2939938 fatcat:7m6tj6a4kngvzkinf23c354mye