The Bumpy Road to 5G – A Secure Gi-LAN can Help

5G promises higher speeds, lower latency, a multitude of new IoT applications and, for the mobile network operator – massive disruption in existing network technologies and business models. At stake – $1.3T in new 5G-enabled revenue, with 10X the growth rates of historic mobile network revenues. Battling declining revenue growth with lower profitability, mobile network operators are pursuing this new opportunity, and most are planning on initial roll-outs within the next 18 months.

The 5G non-standalone (NSA) models defined by 3GPP combined with multi-access edge compute provides a path for mobile network operators to upgrade existing RANs to 5G while still leveraging a common 4G core.

But this is still not an easy task. Operators must carefully navigate the bumpy road between 4G and 5G, transitioning to service-based architectures and virtualized infrastructure, while boosting security, improving operational efficiency, lowering costs, and increasing performance, all with lower latency.
Optimization of the GI-LAN can help operators meet all these objectives as they move towards 5G.

Gi-LAN for 5G Traffic Loads

The Gi-LAN functions protect the core elements and define how quickly and efficiently traffic moves through the core. Therefore, it’s crucial to have an efficient Gi-LAN architecture to deliver a high-quality 5G service experience. Recent research commissioned by A10 Networks, as well as engagements with seven tier-one mobile operators has validated several key challenges for mobile network operators as they begin 5G-NSA deployments. Here are a few top survey results:

Mobile network operators have mastered the skills needed to build and maintain massive, complex mobile networks. From 2G to 3G to 4G, mobile service providers have successfully managed millions of operational details and technology change-outs and successfully deployed and managed their networks while maintaining high performance. This is a fundamental skill that few, if any, companies outside the mobile operator space can replicate.

But the 5G transformation is more fundamental – success is no longer defined by network technology alone. In 5G, mobile network operators are one part of a larger 5G-enabled ecosystem that includes multiple ICT players. Vertical enterprise applications will take center stage with new large-scale industrial applications and critical IoT, such as telemedicine, public safety and infrastructure. These new commercial applications will leverage multi-access edge networks that include Wi-Fi, fixed broadband, unlicensed spectrum, as well as mobile.

Boosting security and optimizing Gi-LAN can help operators navigate the path to 5G.

For more information on how to secure the transition to 5G, download the white paper, “The Mobile Core Under Attack.


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June 3, 2019

About Terry Young

Terry Young is Director of 5G Marketing at A10 Networks. She is responsible for developing programs and marketing material that describe business value of A10 solutions for mobile network operators and other service providers. Prior to A10 Networks, Terry has 20 years experience in the telecommunications industry, including AT&T (mobile and fixed businesses), where she developed market strategy recommendations for new business initiatives for AT&T. As a principal analyst for a syndicated market research company early in the 3G technology introduction, her 3G/4G market analysis and forecasts were published by the UMTS Forum. She also previously held positions with several start-up mobile infrastructure and software vendors, including Infoblox and Palo Alto Networks. Terry has an MBA from Arizona State University and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. READ MORE