New 5G Standard Taps AI for New Use Cases

The telecommunications ecosystem is working on an update to the 5G Advanced standard that aims to support faster speed, lower latencies, and new capabilities, as well as to enhance reliability. Artificial intelligence (AI) will be a key tool to unleash the new capabilities.

The new 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) standard will be known as Release 18. The first completion milestone toward the standard, ASN.1, is expected to be issued next month. 5G Advanced is particularly important because it will set the stage for 6G.

 5G and AI

In a blog post, John Smee, Qualcomm’s senior vice president of engineering, points to three impending 5G Advanced uses cases that will use AI.

Channel feedback: AI can optimize radio performance to support faster speeds, lower latencies, and more reliable connections. Qualcomm and Nokia are working on a use case in which sequential training techniques enable data sharing without shared neural network structures. This will solve issues of network interoperability and allow different AI systems to share knowledge and support a data-driven air interface, according to Qualcomm.

Beam management: Qualcomm is researching machine learning for beam management optimization. This will drive the efficiency and performance of 5G mmWave systems. Expected benefits of AI-enabled beam management include end-to-end power savings and streamlined wireless communication.

Positioning: Qualcomm is researching precise positioning and high-resolution RF sensing using mmWave and sub-7 GHz spectrum in outdoor and indoor environments. It also is researching use of AI/ML for intelligent industrial positioning. These capabilities are vital to the evolution of 5G Advanced to 6G, the company says.

“5G Advanced kickstarts the new era of wireless AI in Release 18, focusing on the evaluation of AI models and frameworks that can seamlessly integrate into end-to-end wireless systems,” Smee wrote in the blog post.

“This pivotal work lays the groundwork for forthcoming specifications in 5G Advanced Releases 19 and 20 as well as the highly anticipated AI-native 6G platform.”


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