Right now, most wireless network analysts look at 5G-Advanced as a steppingstone to 6G.
3GPP Release 18 marks the start of 5G-Advanced, which builds on the 5G baseline defined by 3GPP in Releases 15, 16, and 17.
With 5G-Advanced, eMBB features will also be further enhanced such as UL data rate, capacity and coverage are for example expected to be improved.
eMBB refers mainly to smartphone devices and corresponding applications like web, app, email and video which rely on internet access. Some of these use cases require large amounts of data and are demanding on capacity.
A novel duplexing scheme will be studied that allows simultaneously transmitting and receiving on the same TDD carrier. NR multi-hop solutions will be enhanced by mobile IAB nodes and network controlled repeaters. Dynamic spectrum sharing (DSS) enhancements that come with Release 18 will increase the NR performance, especially when fewer LTE devices share the DSS carrier in the future.
Mobility will also be enhanced in Release 18 with a special focus on enabling faster handovers by leveraging lower layer functionality.
5G-Advanced will also provide further enhancements of the architecture for analytics and on ML model life-cycle management, for example, to improve correctness of the models.
The advancements in the architecture for analytics and data collection serve as a good foundation for AI/ML-based use cases within the different network functions (NFs). Additional use cases will be studied where NFs make use of analytics with the target to support in their decision making, for example, network data analytics functions (NWDAF)- assisted generation of UE policy for network slicing.
To provide coverage in deep-rural regions, 5G-Advanced will also usher in continued enhancements for non-terrestrial satellite networks for broadband and IoT.
With L1/L2-based intercell mobility and conditional handover enhancements, devices can also be more seamlessly connected as they move from one cell to another.
Additionally, 5G-Advanced will introduce further improvements in spectral efficiency and energy savings
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The 5G-Advanced training course, will cover topics related to advanced applications with enhanced mobility, high reliability, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), blockchain, network performance, improvements in spectral efficiency, energy savings, non-terrestrial networks (NTNs), high-altitude platforms (HAPs), unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and low earth orbit (LEO) satellites.
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