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#51 What is 5G – Insights & opportunities – Jens Pilz

Jens Pilz, Spectrum specialist, worked at the Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz-Institute in Berlin he managed several research projects in the 5G field. He looked very closely into the 5G NR physical layer, had overlap with transport network technologies not only in the wireless domain, but also in the wired domain. He grew up with digital technology since 1990 and not only was a first adopter of cellular technologies thanks to his family but also followed every development in IT closely.

He studied physics at the TU-Berlin and wrote his Diploma-Thesis in Terahertz-Technology. He is very interested in disruptive technologies especially the political and regulatory framework growing the right circumstances for flourishing.

Insights:

  • What is 5G?
  • What did 5G change in the mobile network
  • Why are there discussions that there are three or four big players 5G providers?
  • Are the leaders in the technology field so far, even if it’s quite open?
  • The opportunities in the 5G technology?
  • Wrapping up questions

Key Discussion Points:

[00:08] Introduction to the episode guest

[01:35] What is 5G?

[03:47] How would you explain 5G to a kid?

[05:55] What did 5G change in the mobile network

[11:53] Why are there discussions that there are three or four big players 5G providers?

[15:16] Are the leaders in the technology field so far even if it’s quite open?

[22:10] What are the opportunities you see in this technology?

[29:25] What are your favorite books

[30:29] If you could go back in time to your 18-year-old self, what kind of advice would you give yourself?

Interesting Quotes:

“In 5G, there are some advancements, and we could go into detail, but that’s very technical stuff. What you don’t see is what is happening after the base station. So, your phone has a connection to a base station nearby. And after that, it’s a data network, and in a sense, you have it in data centers. So, you have like switches, routers, servers, stuff like that. But it’s not concentrated like in a data center where everything is close by; it’s stretched out all over the country. Sometimes even more with the continent.”

“With 5G, there are standardized interfaces into the network to gain this kind of information. What the standard does is open up the information; usually, only the operator had access to. And now everybody, maybe not everybody, but many people who develop applications can now tailor it to the use case of mobile. They have their standardized interfaces to the network, the information in the network, and can request the network to changes its behavior according to your service.”

“When 5G first entered the market, it was implemented on top of the 4g network. So they only switched out or added new antennas, and that’s something you need high expertise for it.”

“If you enable every user on the world to build, or to buy equipment to add to the network, then it will explode.”

“Accept that there is an unknown and do not force your comfort zone to lean into the unknown and to embrace the discomfort because of the discomfort there is a growth.”

Book Recommendations:

The Complete Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams

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