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Private 5G networks are designed to address critical wireless communication requirements for diverse organizations that include public safety, infrastructure and enterprise. They can utilize a physical and virtual cellular system consisting of a radio access network (RAN), and a core network. Private 5G networks are used as an alternative or extension to public wireless networks, WiFi, and wired networks.

The most important feature of private 5G is the ability to deliver deterministic performance. Reduced latency, improved coverage, and increased security and reliability are other key characteristics needed to serve mission-critical or business-critical use cases. 

This article highlights how service providers can use private 5G as a route to new revenue streams, primarily towards enterprises and other vertical industry segments. Due to the complexity of private 5G networks, service providers can potentially lose out on the lucrative revenue opportunity it presents. They will need to partner with hardware, software, and integration vendors for the ability to deliver an overall private 5G solution, and to capitalize on the market’s rapid growth predictions.  

Ingredients for success

Analysys Mason outlines the potential opportunity of private 5G networks in the whitepaper Leveraging cloud-native technology: CSP strategies for success in the 5G private market. Analysys Mason forecasts the total number of private 5G networks to reach 27,300 in 2027.  They predict capital and operational expenditure (CAPEX and OPEX) for the 5G market to rise from $690mn in 2023 to $5.9bn in 2027. 

The whitepaper outlines several barriers to private 5G adoption:

  • Few enterprises possess deep network expertise, making it difficult for them to specify and deploy a solution that addresses the complexity of their internal processes and systems
  • Enterprise business requirements are so unique that they dictate a diverse range of requirements that can only be met by an equally diverse range of vendors
  • Enterprises need a solution that is end-to-end with full lifecycle support
  • Enterprises need to address the growing compliance and security risk caused by new technologies such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, the use of public cloud, and the greater attack surface brought about the convergence of OT/IT (operational and information technology)

Service providers are well placed to remove these barriers, and need to leverage their long experience in the deployment and management of networks. By enhancing their sales and marketing expertise, and further strengthening their partner ecosystems, service providers will be able to differentiate themselves and appear attractive to enterprises.

Engaging with the wider ecosystem

Successful private 5G deployments by service providers will require strategic collaboration. With our vast partner ecosystem, Red Hat offers access to the latest innovations where we create certified solutions for service providers to build on Red Hat platforms and technologies to achieve their business objectives.

Red Hat and Tech Mahindra are collaborating to offer service providers in-depth systems integration skills for the deployment of private 5G solutions at scale, and to a large enterprise customer base across many different environments and verticals. With our collaboration, service providers are able to address gaps in their service delivery and ecosystem with the delivery of a compliant and consistent end-to-end private 5G solution.

The role of an automated cloud-native application platform

Private 5G networks should be deployed with a software-defined implementation that uses a reliable and low latency connectivity and application platform. Red Hat OpenShift provides a unified cloud-native infrastructure for private 5G networks that reduces complexity for different industry verticals due to its flexibility to accommodate different deployment architectures. 

Service providers are adopting hybrid and multicloud strategies that use private and public clouds for their private 5G networks to benefit from the agility and flexibility these environments offer. A unified platform across diverse cloud environments is important to ensure consistency of experience.

Automation is fundamental for the successful and efficient deployment and operations of private 5G networks. Red Hat’s automation solutions, including Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform and Red Hat OpenShift, have the platform, tools, and capabilities service providers need to build a secure and stable foundation for deploying end-to-end automation solutions for their entire network infrastructure, including private 5G deployments.

Closing remarks

Service providers should consider the adoption of flexible, Agile hybrid and multicloud strategies for their private 5G deployments to benefit from the following:

  • Portability, flexibility, and scalability to deliver connectivity and applications to multiple verticals
  • Consistent operational and development model across their entire infrastructure, including private cloud and public cloud providers
  • Ease and speed of service deployment through a simplified service portfolio and included developer tools
  • Field proven and feature-rich platform with certified partner network functions

Red Hat and Tech Mahindra are helping service providers simplify the complexity of deploying and operating private 5G. With access to an extensive partner ecosystem, service providers acquire the flexibility they need to accommodate multiple market segments with competitive private 5G solutions that gains them market share within an emerging market opportunity.

To learn more, download the Analysys Mason Leveraging cloud-native technology: CSP strategies in the 5G private market whitepaper, visit our What is private 5G? article page, and read our Private 5G Networking: How Red Hat and partners are driving deeper value article.


About the author

Rob McManus is a Principal Product Marketing Manager at Red Hat. McManus is an adept member of complex matrix-style teams tasked to define and position telecommunication service provider and partner solutions with a focus on network transformation that includes 5G, vRAN and the evolution to cloud-native network functions (CNFs).

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