As the growing applications for mobile internet access place greater demands on wireless broadband communication networks around the globe, telecom service providers are updating their infrastructure to support the traffic.
There are more than 7.2 billion wireless connections, including 1.45 billion LTE connections, around the world today that are operating with the technology standards developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP).
5G Americas, the industry trade association and voice of 5G and LTE for the Americas, announced the publication of a technical Executive Summary titled "Inside 3GPP Release 13- Understanding the Standards for LTE Advanced Enhancements" that outlines many of the innovations that will lay the groundwork for future mobile wireless networks.
"LTE is not a yesterday story. It is a technology for today and tomorrow. LTE to LTE-Advanced Pro provides transformational innovation and will be the mobile broadband foundation for the next generation of wireless technology," said Chris Pearson, president of 5G Americas.
New technologies for building mobile innovations
The summary offers insight to the future of wireless broadband and how new requirements and technological goals will be achieved. The report updates Release 13 (Rel-13) features that are now completed at 3GPP and were not available at the time of the publication of a detailed 5G Americas report, "Mobile Broadband Evolution Towards 5G: 3GPP Release 12 & Release 13 and Beyond" in June 2015.
The 3GPP standards have many innovations remaining for LTE to create a foundation for 5G. Rel-12 - which was finalised in December 2014 - contains a vast array of features for both LTE and HSPA+ that bring greater efficiency for networks and devices, as well as enable new applications and services.
Many of the Rel-12 features were extended into Rel-13. Rel-13, functionally frozen in December 2015 and completed in March 2016, continues to build on these technical capabilities while adding many robust new features.
Jim Seymour, Principal Engineer, Mobility CTO Group, Cisco and co-leader of the 5G Americas report explained, "3GPP Release 13 is just a peek behind the curtain for the unveiling of future innovations for LTE that will parallel the technical work at 3GPP on 5G. Both LTE and 5G will work together to form our connected future."
"The vision for 5G is being clarified in each step of the 3GPP standards. To understand those steps, 5G Americas provides reports on the developments in this succinct, understandable format," said Vicki Livingston, Head of Communications for the association.
The technical Executive Summary mentioned above was written by several members of the 5G Americas organization and is available for free download on their website.