Supply chain
Open architecture 5G networks gaining momentum
Benson Wu, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei

The development of open architecture 5G networks has been gaining momentum recently as telecom operators worldwide are under pressure to reduce capital expenditure amid slower-than-expected penetration in the 5G subscriber market, according to Digitimes Research.

The coverage of 5G networks is still below 20% on average, Digitimes Research has found.

The rapidly escalating US-China tensions have driven the global open network sector closer to a "G2" divide - namely one standard, two ecosystems.

The use of high frequency bands for 5G networks effectively increases the speeds of data transmission, which neverthelss comes with high costs for 5G base station deployments. Telecom operators are unable to raise 5G rates much higher due to a lack of killer applications at th emoment. Non-stand alone (NSA) and open networks could effectively reduce telecoms' cost concerns during initial 5G network deployments.

The open architecture 5G networks are getting increasing support in the US, as the Trump's administration is promoting a shake-up of the global supply chain and decoupling of the US industries from China's. And the open networks could become an effective solution for excluding Huawai and ZTE from the telecom equipment market outside China.

The impact of the US government's efforts to contain Chinese equipment suppliers is likely to continue intensifying, and could lead to the supply chain led by the industries in the US and their allies in Japan, Korea and Europe to operate independently from the ones established in China, resulting in two separate 5G ecosystems.

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