MPESA’s of 5G

Creating the MPESA’s of 5G require 5G Test-beds

Creating the MPESA’s of 5G require 5G Test-beds

The design and deployment of 5G end-to-end test-beds at several regionally representative spots globally is of crucial importance for accelerated development of innovative 5G services and a smooth migration to 5G. History clearly shows that when operators and equipment providers open up their labs to young innovators, mobile applications such as the likes of MPESA which have changed financial accessibility to several millions of subscribers can flourish and impact the sustainable socio-economic development of a society. With the introduction of the transformative 5G wireless ICT technologies and standards, it is thus possible to expect innovative applications and services to flourish even in a limited resource environments. The recent IEEE 5G world forum in Dresden, 5G Forum-Korea in Seoul and the MWC-2019 in Shanghai, these events clearly showed the need for such end-2-end 5G test-bed platforms, so that we can unleash the creative potential of young innovators to address the local and global demand for sustainable technology innovation, smooth migration to 5G networks, and development of the much needed innovative 5G applications and enablement of industry verticals. It is thus of crucial importance to all stakeholders in the wireless communications value chain to support the hosting of an open end-2-end 5G standard test-bed that can be used in testing graduate student projects from Higher educational institutes and young innovators in the innovation-hubs: Accelerating the development and testing of relevant & sustainable 5G mobile technology services  in each country. This is especially of paramount importance in emerging economy countries.

A recently released white paper describes the path for “Making 5G a reality in Africa”

The paper identified several relevant 5G use cases for possible deployment in Africa, however, without an end-2-end 5G test-bed to develop, test and run proof-of-concept applications, it is impossible to know the transformative potential and societal impact that the expected MPESA’s of 5G can deliver. In the author’s opinion the white paper could be extended to include the development and hosting of 5G end-2-end (5GE2E) testing labs regionally, to harness the innovative potential of the ~70 % youth population in most of the emerging economy countries.

Figure 1, showing the advantages of a 5G E2E test-bed for the 5G eco-system.

Global community realization of climate change and the achievement UN-SDGs goals, persuaded the GSMA and several ICT industry players in the mobile value chain to include sustainability and life-cycle carbon reduction plans in their operational and manufacturing processes. The crucial role that 5G end-to-end (5GE2E) innovation and testing labs play, for developing innovative & Green network solutions and services, shouldn’t be underestimated. Bringing 5G innovation & sustainability to the local context and grassroots is possible with 5GE2E testbeds, and can accelerate the development of green network technologies, innovative 5G services and produce tangible contributions the UN-SDGs from the mobile & ICT services industry. Increased number of entries to the Global Mobile Awards by the GSMA which is one such interventions promoting green networks can be one of the results from the establishment 5GE2E innovation labs at regional places across the globe. It is in the interest of all stakeholders of the mobile & ICT technology value chain to support the establishment of 5G end-2-end test-beds and encourage development of more innovative and green 5G network technology, services and smart industry verticals to combat climate change. The introduction of emerging technologies such as AI and 5GE2E test-beds are expected to make testing and improvements in mobile network energy consumption and operational efficiency for the introduction of transformative 5G services such as the MPESA’s of 5G, including  the enablement of smart industries and sustainable connectivity.

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