During yesterday’s opening keynote session, CTIA chairman and AT&T mobility president and CEO Glenn Lurie highlighted the role of open source software in the 5G roadmap. “We have to embrace open source, software-centric solutions. We know this drives flexibility and scalability with the growth of the network. It makes everything faster, better, and cheaper,” Lurie said.
Of course, it’s no surprise Lurie is advocating for open source software. AT&T has said it will release its software-defined networking (SDN) platform as open source code and will use the Linux Foundation to help develop an organization around the project.
Known as Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management, and Policy (ECOMP), the platform was announced by AT&T in March. AT&T said at the time that it might make the code available on an open source basis, but only if the community showed interest in contributing.
Security will likely also be a part of 5G and possibly even part of the 5G standard. “Next-generation networks must be secure,” said FCC chairman Tom Wheeler at CTIA, adding that the FCC is working with industry to make sure cybersecurity is addressed during the design of 5G networks and devices. Wheeler also said that privacy requirements needs to be “baked into the 5G standard” so that consumer privacy is protected.
Wheeler’s speech was light on details of exactly how security will be part of the 5G standards process. Operators are currently working with the 3GPP standards group to come up with a 5G standard.
According to Chris Pearson, president of 5G Americas, the 3GPP has said that it is targeting June 2018 for first part of the 5G standard to be determined, with the second phase due by December 2019. The 3GPP will then present its recommendations to the ITU for inclusion in the IMT-2020 standard.