Looking Back on 2023: 5G and Fiber Optics Take Center Stage in the Telecommunications Landscape

By Greg Tavarez December 29, 2023

As the curtains close on 2023, the telecommunications industry finds itself in a period of dynamic transformation. Driven by the relentless march of technological innovations and evolving consumer demands, the past year has seen shifts in network infrastructure, service offerings and competitive dynamics.




These “shifts” included 5G taking more of a center stage and fiber optic infrastructure being a crucial anchor.

Starting with 5G, 2023 marked a pivotal year for 5G rollouts. My fellow editor, Alex Passett, wrote a piece about how tech giants Intel (News - Alert) and Ericsson joined forces to develop the next generation of 5G infrastructure. Through the agreement, Intel will utilize its 18A process technology to manufacture custom chips for Ericsson (News - Alert)'s future 5G equipment.

This partnership boosted network capacity and energy efficiency for communication service providers, or CSPs, through optimized hardware and software solutions. Intel manufactured custom 5G system-on-chips (SoCs) for Ericsson, while also refining its 4th Gen Xeon processors with vRAN Boost technology for integration into Ericsson's Cloud RAN solutions. This combination promises increased network flexibility, scalability and performance for CSPs.

In simpler terms, Intel and Ericsson are teaming up to build faster, more efficient, and more adaptable 5G networks for the future. This collaboration bodes well for both companies and for the advancement of 5G technology as a whole.

We also saw innovative 5G solutions expand into multiple European companies through a partnership between Nokia and Vodafone. Nokia's Converged Charging software are deployed across Vodafone (News - Alert)'s network, which enables new features such as network slicing and flexible product offerings. The NCC software operates as a dynamic containerized network function within a 5G standalone environment. This means that it can be easily scaled and adapted to meet the needs of different users. The software also includes a drag-and-drop interface that makes it easy to use.

The partnership will allow for faster speeds, but also for more customized and efficient service delivery. This is a big win for consumers and businesses alike.

Sure, wireless innovation surged ahead with the likes of 5G. However, fiber optic infrastructure remained a key anchor for the evolving data landscape. The global fiber optics market size was valued at $8.76 billion in 2022 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.9% from 2023 to 2030, according to Grand View Research. This highlights the growing demand for fiber optic cables as bandwidth needs across carrier and enterprise networks are rising.

For example, InfiniVAN, a company based in the Philippines that boasts a comprehensive range of services, from fiber optic network infrastructure to experienced technical support, ensures a dependable internet experience for its clients. To further enhance its network, InfiniVAN partnered with Ribbon Communications, a provider of real-time communications technology.

Ribbon's NPT IP Routing and Apollo Optical Transport solutions helped modernize InfiniVAN's backbone infrastructure. The NPT 1800 system simplifies service delivery in urban areas, and Apollo addresses the growing demand for high-speed internet connections by offering customizable solutions tailored to specific business needs.

InfiniVAN's partnership with Ribbon highlights the commitment of providing businesses with reliable connectivity through fiber solutions.

And, just like 5G expanding its global footprint, new fiber technologies and services were brought to Europe through a DZS and Orange (News - Alert) partnership. According to an article written by Passett, this collaboration leverages DZS's Velocity fiber access portfolio within Orange Polska's network, aiming to meet demands for faster internet speeds like 2.5 Gigabit and 10 Gigabit technologies.

Both companies see this partnership as a strategic move, with DZS viewing it as an opportunity to enhance Orange's fiber infrastructure and network automation, and Orange appreciating DZS's alignment with industry standards, enabling a multi-vendor approach for optimal cost-efficiency and service quality.

The long-story-short of this? This successful initial deployment paves the way for broader rollout of next-generation fiber solutions across Europe.

As we step into 2024, the future of the telecommunications industry promises to be even more dynamic. 5G will likely continue to evolve and pave the way for next-generation applications like AR and AI. And there is an opportunity for fiber optic networks to become ubiquitous, enabling hyper-fast data transfer and fueling further digital transformation.

With that said, I am excited to learn more about the direction 5G and fiber optic networks are set to take when I head to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on February 13-15, 2024, for ITEXPO (News - Alert).

For the latest in business communications and technology tools, solutions, and strategies that are re-shaping how businesses operate and communicate, join the conversation at ITEXPO 2024, taking place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, February 13-15, 2024, part of the #TECHSUPERSHOW. Since 1999, ITEXPO has combined educational conference programming with a robust exhibit hall, networking events, and other activities, bringing together buyers and providers of business technology products and services that drive business success. Along with ITEXPO, #TECHSUPERSHOW includes MSP Expo, IoT Evolution Expo, Future of Work Expo, Enterprise Metaverse Expo, Generative AI Expo, and more.




Edited by Alex Passett
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