Agnes Mends-Crentsil

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According to NETSCOUT CTO and Senior Vice President Bruce Kelley, 5G is a fire hose for data. The fire hose analogy crystalizes the rate at which a 5G network collects data. But it also provides a glimpse into the lingering challenges inherent in managing massive amounts of data to continuously find business value that will optimize customer experiences, improve existing business operations, and increase return on investment (ROI).

The data 5G generates is destined to increase exponentially. Research shows that by 2030 the shortage of data scientists in the U.S. alone will reach the quarter-million level. Simply put, 5G is pulling in data at a rate with which humans cannot keep up. One way to bridge this gap is via artificial intelligence (AI).

AI will help enterprises with 5G networks to automate mundane, time-consuming, and tedious tasks, and allow for discovery of network events that cannot be determined by humans. AI is a big part of 5G. Here are seven reasons 5G needs AI to succeed:

1. Optimum customer experiences. AI can be applied to large amounts of data to quickly analyze, apply reason, data fit, cluster, and optimize results in a reliable and impactful way to ensure consistent customer experiences.

2. Exponential data growth. From factory floor to autonomous vehicles, the Internet of Things (IoT) will push the exponential growth of 5G data, and each IoT device sensor will lead to more data. AI modules can optimize this massive amount of data to achieve intelligence for business impact.

3. Diagnostic checklists. Numerous concerns could arise in a complex 5G system. With AI, diagnostic checklists can be automated to support instant troubleshooting of issues, including but not limited to video quality, latency issues, and audio gaps, which will free up personnel to focus on the higher-value activities for which they are better suited.

4. Always-on remote operations. The global COVID-19 pandemic makes remote operations highly important due to the drastic changes in network service demands, as well as operational procedures (e.g., the need for social distancing). AI can provide automation for rote tasks and can better facilitate coordination in-person or not; this makes 5G networks scalable for the workplace of the future moving forward.

5. Predictive and proactive networks. The 5G ecosystem is drastically more complex than prior technology iterations. Distinct from the assorted group of players—service providers, core and edge cloud providers, and enterprises—5G requires diverse and multidimensional session elements, from location to software version, to device type, and so on. AI routines can quickly navigate the complexity of the 5G networks—and do so more accurately than human recognition can—yielding more-predictive and proactive networks and resulting in viable universal enterprise-grade mobile networks.

6. Cybersecurity and automatic detection. Vectors for attack have the potential to significantly increase in a decentralized 5G network, due to a large attack surface and applications hosted at the “edges.” The applications at the edge are more difficult to protect. Implementing AI modules is important for supporting automatic detection of potential tampering for 5G-sensitive applications.

7. Visibility and organizational culture. A diverse 5G universe must include a visibility strategy with end-through-end capabilities into all AI modules for 5G network components, from differing cloud categories (public, edge, and so forth) to service types (e.g., video and IoT). Cultural challenges are likely to arise in transitioning personnel and processes from manual styles of work to more automated methodologies. Comprehensive visibility can provide actionable insights to help with a smooth and gradual transition from 4G to 5G.

To take full advantage of 5G, enterprises need to consider a vendor with deep domain knowledge in multiple disciplines that can help to integrate AI into their 5G networks. NETSCOUT scalable and vendor-agnostic solutions can provide end-through-end visibility from radio access network (RAN), core network, and data center edge with actionable insights for any network, any cloud, any technology, and any edge throughout the 5G lifecycle.

Read the full article:  Why 5G Needs AI To Succeed

Agnes Mends Crentsil is a product marketing manager on the Technical Marketing team at NETSCOUT.

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