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Setting the standard

From the first analog systems, to 2G, 3G, 4G, and now on to 5G, our collaborations with global industry and academia provide essential input for developing a standard that meets the needs of different industries, as well as society as a whole.

We are recognized as leaders in 3GPP and other major standardization organizations. After all, Ericsson is built on groundbreaking innovations and great people. We revolutionized analog communications with new switching techniques and technology, and are at the forefront of developing what will become 5G.

Every innovation has its own story, with experts challenging traditional ways of thinking. We continue to put enormous time and effort into setting open standards that make global communications and connections possible, significantly impacting people, business and society.

What is standardization?

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Standardization is a framework of agreements for all relevant parties in an industry to ensure the creation of good performing systems, products and services within the set guidelines. It can help to maximize compatibility, interoperability, safety, repeatability, or quality. Developing a new telecom technical standard within a standardization organization is based on a consensus of different parties; these include telecom vendors, operators, users, interest groups, and governments.

Here at Ericsson, we have always been a strong driver in the telecom industry’s standardization work, developing standards that share common values.

Creating a cohesive innovation platform

In 2012, Ericsson prepared the first draft of an initial 5G standard, detailing its rationale, goals, requirements and scope. These basic 5G principles were aligned with the major cellular players, and are now taken for granted when mentioning a 5G system. 

Alongside developing the 5G standard, we are considering how these global standards complement a networked society – a world where everything benefits from being connected. Global standards are fundamental to ubiquitous connectivity in the ICT industry, particularly as globally-standardized technologies ensure worldwide interoperability between networks, devices and operators. These have already proved a successful means of making technology more affordable for mainstream users.

The key domains of the 5G system are wider than previous generations, including support for network slicing, wireless and wired access, transport, cloud, applications, management and orchestration. With network slicing, different verticals – such as railway, public safety, industry automation, vehicle-to-vehicle and utilities – can have their own specific requirements implemented in the same network.

As these structures converge, we are placed in a unique position to lead the development of new standards for all major mobile and fixed communication systems. This creates an innovation platform; that is, a network for all industries and society.

"We cannot be sure about the use cases in 5G and how they will work out, but what we know is that we are moving the technical boundaries forward, creating the biggest innovation platform ever."

- Ulf Ewaldsson, Ericsson's CTO at the time, speaking at the Mobile World Congress 2017