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Private network trends for 2021 and beyond

Exclusive OMDIA podcast explores 2021 top 5 private wireless trends. What enterprises need to know and next steps they should take to deploy private wireless.

Pablo Tomasi

Pablo Tomasi

Principal Analyst for OMDIA

The top five private network trends for 2021 and beyond

Pablo Tomasi, Principal Analyst from OMDIA covering 4G/LTE and 5G, will guide you through OMDIA’s view on the relevance of private networks, what they expect for private networks in 2021 and why these developments are significant for enterprises across the globe.

Key points:

  • An overview of the private wireless market
  • The important role wireless will play in the digitalization of the enterprise
  • The impact of COVID-19
  • The flexibility of private wireless to adapt to a wide variety of enterprises
  • The seamless transition from 4G/LTE to 5G
  • The need for partnerships
  • The key role of spectrum and the differences between countries.

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Podcast at a glance

Private wireless networks have matured over the last few years and they now support a variety of use cases for multiple industries in multiple business and mission-critical environments. The evolution of the 4G/LTE and 5G technologies has been matched with real deployment results across all industries.

Private 4G/LTE and 5G networks are becoming so important because they can enable the digital transformation of the enterprise. Digital enterprise are using innovative technologies such as the cloud, IoT, and AI to be able to connect, collect, compute, and act on their data. 4G/LTE and 5G provide the secure, reliable, flexible, predictable, and mobile connectivity essential to make this possible.

The first trend is the way in which COVID-19 has highlighted and accelerated the trend towards the digitalization of the enterprise.

The second trend is the need for agility and flexibility in the enterprise market, especially in terms of business processes, with data, automation, security, and reliable connectivity becoming essential features. This can also be seen in the need for a range of network deployment options, including fully private options where everything is on site, but also hybrid deployments which leverage both dedicated and shared resources.

The third trend is the need for a transitional strategy from 4G/LTE to 5G. While 2021 will accelerate private 5G networks trials and offerings, this will be a slow and steady evolution not a revolution. This market will remain a 4G/LTE market because it is a proven technology and has advantages in terms of ecosystem and devices. It will take time for the private networks market to become a 5G market, however in 2021 enterprises and vendors should continue to have 5G conversations, do the needed validation testing with industrial vendors and should continue to build a 5G roadmap. Fortunately, there is a solid upgrade path from 4G/LTE to 5G.

The fourth trend is partnerships. The significance of ecosystems to bring private networks in new areas is clear in the work done by organizations such as the 5G Alliance for Connected Industries and Automation (5G-ACIA), the Utilities Broadband Alliance, and the CBRS Alliance. The wide reach of private networks across virtually every vertical market will result in multiple value chains potentially taking a role in the delivery of these solutions. Ecosystems and strategic partnerships are key ingredients of this world. Having multiple partnerships with companies from all backgrounds from local SIs to international telcos and industrial specialists is essential to serve the private networks market. The fifth trend is spectrum availability. In 2021 and beyond, spectrum will continue to be a driver of activities. The quest for spectrum will become more complex as the market matures with spectrum band type and amount, enterprises ‘preference, size, and use cases all affecting this conversation. There will not be one single spectrum and solution, and the market will evolve towards a combination of different type of spectrum to find the right mix to serve the enterprise.

For any enterprise, this is the time to educate yourself on the opportunity of private 4G/LTE and 5G networks and to join the wider conversation to understand why so many companies are moving today to accelerate their digitalization using mission-critical private wireless

Read more about private networks trends in 2021 and beyond to understand the unique datapoints and recommendations for enterprises thinking about their digital transformation and how private wireless can help them achieve it.

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