For the past few years, Cisco and the other technology vendors serving the Mobile Service Provider community have been talking about 5G Readiness. 5G is on the horizon – better start planning, better start thinking about what you are going to do. This product and that product is 5G ready. And what does “5G ready” really mean? Well, to Cisco, 5G-ready meant that it was either software driven (i.e. virtualized or highly programmable) such that when the 5G specs were ratified, the changes could be downloaded as upgrades or new licenses. Or 5G-ready meant that the product could already support the massive scalability needed for 5G.

Well, 5G is no longer on the horizon – 5G is here. Now. This year -2018. 5G NSA has been ratified and several radio vendors have announced that they will ship 5G radios this year. Also, some mobile device manufacturers announced that they will ship 5G mobile devices this year. Additionally, several mobile service providers have stated their intent to turn on 5G service this year. Now, no one is saying that there will be massive rollouts of 5G everywhere. But 5G has begun and 2018 is the year of that beginning. That is why we are no longer talking about 5G readiness – we are talking about 5G Now!

The mobile service provider will not differentiate themselves by the 5G radio. Everyone will have that. The Mobile Service Provider will differentiate themselves by the connected experiences and cloud services that they can deliver to consumers and businesses. The Mobile Service provider will need a multicloud-to-client, multivendor network, that is highly automated, able to partition network resources through network slicing, and quickly deliver services where and when they are needed. They will need to provide visibility and security for their business customers and for themselves.

On February 26, 2018, we announce the “Cisco 5G Now!” portfolio of new and enhanced products and solutions. These will include 5G support in:

  • Cisco Ultra Services Platform, the industry-leading cloud-native converged mobile core.
    • Converged next-gen mobile core supporting 5G, 4G, 3G, Wi-Fi and IoT
    • Distributed edge services and intelligence
    • Network slicing across both 5G and 4G
    • Enhancements to support massive scale IoT (and 5G)
    • Two new optimization licenses (Video and TCP)
    • And more
  • Cisco Policy Suite:
    • Expanding its full scope from 3G/4G to include 5G
  • SON:
    • Supporting 5G, 4G, 3G and 2G radios
    • New SONFlex for customized SON APIs
      • SON APIs can be designed per service, per user and per slice
    • SONFlex Studio enabling Darg-and-Drop ease to create the new SON APIs
  • NCS 500 Series Access Router
    • NCS 520, NCS 540 and NCS 560
    • Greatest port density and throughput in its form factor
    • Supports 5G stringent specs for latency, timing and sync
    • IOS XR – secure, reliable, carrier-class
    • Single OS cell tower-to-data center enables simpler operations, programmability and automation
    • Segment Routing enabled SLAs
    • Low power consumption
    • Zero-touch deployment

In addition, Cisco Crosswork automation – closed loop, multi-vendor, mass-scale. Also, 5G networks are designed to be more open and flexible. However, this also exposes the network to a greater risk of cyber-attack. Cisco Security for 5G provides the industry’s most advanced, complete and orchestrated security architecture. This includes visibility into the packet core and network slices. The ability to quickly identify, isolate and remove threats.

Yes, Cisco sees 5G differently. We see it as a better way to provide connected experiences and services from the multicloud to client. See how together we can redefine the network and reimagine opportunities. “Cisco 5G Now!” makes this possible – now.

Please, come visit us at MWC in Barcelona in Hall 3, location 3E30. We have several live demonstrations of “Cisco 5G Now!” solutions with our eco-system partners and customer partners.


Dan Kurschner

Marketing Manager, Product/Systems