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Network slicing

Enabling business-intent driven networking

5G brings a huge leap in data speeds, along with low latency and ultra-reliability. Because the requirements of consumer and enterprise use cases vary depending on application type, security needs or their end-users’ willingness to pay, you need an efficient way to deliver differentiated services.

With network slicing, CSPs can create multiple virtual networks, or network ‘slices,’ which can deliver application-specific network performance. By using full automation, you can provide business-intent driven, reliable and scalable networking to establish long-tail revenue streams that enhance the monetization of your network platform.

What is network slicing?

The concept of network slicing is not new. It allows CSPs to operate a variety of network services with different services requirements -- such as bandwidth, latency, or availability -- on the same network infrastructure. With 5G, this is now possible for end-to-end services that span any combination of mobile, fixed, transport and core networks. With the wide range of new applications that 5G networks can enable, network slicing brings a much better user experience and ensures more satisfied customers.

How can CSPs grow revenues with network slicing?

In consumer markets, CSPs are looking to generate new revenue growth and create new value through partnerships with vertical industry enterprises, as well as continued ARPU growth. The increased capabilities of 5G-era networks, including bandwidth, speeds, security and latency, offer a value that CSPs can bring to these markets.

5G-era networks are complex. They run on virtualized and containerized infrastructure with 100-fold* more actions within the network. The automated operation of network slicing allows CSPs to package these valuable network capabilities into differentiated, SLA-based services in a cost-effective way that can drive profitable growth.

*Appledore Research

Network slicing use cases

Network slicing enables a broad range of use cases running on the same network. These use cases may be related to similar applications but still have different requirements. Consider motor vehicle applications where the driver and the passengers may consume mobile streaming services. At the same time, the vehicle is providing engine sensor data to the manufacturer and distance sensor data to a traffic control agency to support assisted driving services.  

Explore our Network slicing case studies

Network slicing requirements for different applications

Different applications have varying requirements for throughput and latency and the impact can also be very different. A latency of several hundred milliseconds would not be noticed for music streaming, or for voice calls where buffering can be applied. However, an assisted driving application would be affected. With network slicing, CSPs can provide the right network performance for each application, driving broader acceptance and making 5G a game changer in our lives.  

A similar variety of use cases can be supported in other verticals, e.g. in manufacturing, logistics, sports & entertainment.

How can you make money with network slicing?  

The growth of 5G revenue will be driven by enterprise services and B2B2X business models, as well as an ecosystem approach. Survey responses from 100 CSPs suggest 60% of new 5G revenue will come through the B2B2X, rather than traditional B2B/B2C models, highlighting the importance of partners, an ecosystem and a platform economy.

How network slicing and Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) unlocks new opportunities for you

Automated lifecycle management of slice-based services, offered as Network-as-a-Service or Network Slice-as-a-Service, unlocks the value of the network and enables the CSP to become a utility. Allowing a ‘fail fast – learn fast’ culture, it encourages partner-led use cases that can be rapidly developed with verticals and CSPs at scale. Network slicing, combined with an integrated process framework of design, deploy and assure, E2E closed-loop operations and openness for enterprises to adjust their SLAs, is crucial for monetizing 5G.