Time-Critical Communications for 5G

Csaba Novak

A high degree of reliability and consistent low latency is the biggest differentiator for 5G from other wireless technologies. Time-Critical Communication supports a wide range of latency and reliability – from 50ms-1ms latency with 99.9-99.999% reliability, enabling a variety of latency-sensitivity use cases in real-time media, remote control, industrial control, and mobility automation categories across industries.

Time-Critical Communication (TCC) can be deployed as a software upgrade to existing 5G network infrastructure, on all available frequency bands. The recommended steps that could be considered to start using the TCC in Public Networks:
- Rollout 5G with 5G Core. Consider 5G in multi-layers/bands in areas where capacity is needed.
- Good mid band coverage in wide areas is a good baseline for the introduction of new use cases. This will allow that more dedicated cells/bands could be defined for specific use cases. This is what we call as ‘5G Territories’.
- Add TCC to 5G Territories. By enabling TCC on those areas, it allows that time critical use cases could be enabled which could bring better end user experience with consistent low latency and better reliability.
- Activate new experiences: Gaming hotspots, stadiums, amusement parks, experience centres.

By following these steps, it is possible for Communication Service Providers (CSPs) to address new revenue streams. This allows to move from eMBB subscriptions as the unique revenue stream (based on Data volume and Best effort latency subscriptions) and start addressing eMBB with TCC subscriptions (based on Creating real-time experiences and Guaranteed latency).

In collaboration with leading CSPs, industry and ecosystem partners such as BT, DT, Telia, ABB, Audi, Boliden, since 2017, Ericsson has been piloting various time-critical use cases categorized in four major areas: Industrial control, Mobility automation, Remote Control and Real-Time media.