Prysmian organized the event to engage in open discussion with customers and share experiences and ideas. New telecommunications technologies are moving towards us: 5G, connected vehicles, smart buildings, IoT and so on. We see how this will affect the passive network layer we provide, and see countless opportunities. Although these technologies are not yet completely defined and will evolve, we need to prepare the foundations.
The NExsT Forum provides a platform for exploring today’s key connectivity, optical fibre and infrastructure issues through the views and insights of industry leaders, helping to shape the future direction of new technology development. Together, guests strategized about realizing the potential of fifth generation networks (5G) and the Internet of Things. Ultra-fast networks are already being rolled out and are required to enable new technologies such as self-driving cars, smart cities, IoT and industry 4.0. Discussions centred on the need for cross-industry collaboration across the industry to build successful 5G networks. After all, ‘wireless’ 5G is really not wireless, but relies on a fibre backbone.
Philippe Vanhille, Prysmian Group’s EVP Telecom Business, started the day with a welcome speech that focused on how the industry needs to work together to make 5G become a reality. “We have to keep working together to make 5G happen and there will be no 5G without deep fibre networks. We need to build it to the highest quality standards so it lasts. Let’s build as fast as we can - but let’s do it right.”
Verizon’s Glenn Wellbrock shared some insights found in 5G testing, saying that fibre is the foundation of all 5G deployments. Fiber Broadband Association CEO Lisa Youngers looked at various ways that fibre is critical for 5G and IOT, and discussed how to best support the 5G deployment in rural areas, and the importance of fibre infrastructure both federally and locally. “The core of 5G is a digitally transformed service provider,” said Ken Paker, CTO of TDS Telecommunications, discussing the ways in which the 5G network can boost digital transformation. Bill Cook of Cook Infrastructure Consulting discussed how IoT, 5G, Cloud Computing and smart cities are changing the ways in which we think about network infrastructure. Verizon’s Senior Manager for Infrastructure Planning Christina Bassett of Verizon emphasized quality: “When you build a network, you don’t want a five-year network”.
It has been estimated that by 2021, global Internet users will reach 4.6 billion - 58% of the world’s population - while networked devices and connections will reach 27.1 billion, the equivalent of 3.5 devices per person. Prysmian Group will continue steadfastly contributing to the debate about the foundation of the Gigabit Society, ensuring focus is maintained on the infrastructure needs that will ultimately satisfy the digital demands of worldwide citizens.