Huawei has said it will invest over US$600 million in research and innovation for 5G technologies by 2018 to be ready for commercial deployment starting in 2020 in a move that will see people download high-definition movies in one second and get a true-to-life video communications experience.
Huawei’s 5G network will deliver peak data rates of over 10Gbps, 100 times faster than today’s 4G networks.
According to Eric Xu, rotating CEO of Huawei: “We plan to invest a minimum of US$600 million over the next five years on research and innovation for 5G mobile network technologies to ensure that we are meeting the consumers’ demands for increasingly faster and better connections.”
Xu said the amount does not include investment to productize 5G technologies but will cover a range of key enabling technologies, including the research of air-interface technology.
Huawei began investing in 5G in 2009. At the Mobile World Congress in 2011 and 2012, the company demonstrated industry-leading 5G prototype base stations with the capacity up to 50 Gbps. Huawei’s approach to 5G innovation has been open and collaborative, working extensively with ecosystem partners.
To date, Huawei has participated in the EU’s 5G research projects, worked on the establishment of the 5G Innovation Center (5GIC) in the United Kingdom, and participated in joint research programs with over 20 universities around the world. Huawei will also be an active contributor in building 5G standards and ecosystems to drive a globally consistent standard across the industry.
The issues that the research aims to resolve include availability of spectrum and technological challenges, such as how to engineer network architectures capable of handling increasingly higher data volumes and transmission speeds necessary to accommodate more users on the network.
By 2020, it is estimated that 6.5 billion people worldwide will use mobile networks for data communications and 100 billion of additional ‘things’, such as vehicles, meters, medical devices, and home appliances, will also be connected to the network over 5G. Huawei wants to bring that future now.