5GFF: Accelerating Global 5G Multi-Access Edge Computing Adoption

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Early in 2020, the 5G Future Forum (5GFF) was established to accelerate the global delivery of Multi-access Edge Computing-enabled solutions. The Forum, which is comprised of founding members América Móvil, KT Corp., Rogers, Telstra, Verizon, and Vodafone, is set to release its first technical specifications to members. Yahoo Finance reported that the distribution of the specs, due out in August, is a “major step forward in enabling global interoperability for 5G and Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) deployment to deliver efficient and innovative services to end customers.”

The specifications, including MEC Experience Management and MEC Deployment, will unlock the full potential of 5G and MEC applications. The first, MEC Experience Management, “defines a set of intent-based APIs for functional exposure of edge and workload discovery with potential expansion to include future MEC functions and capabilities” driven by network intelligence, according to Yahoo Finance. MEC Deployment “defines the set of specifications to enable hyperscalers and service providers to deploy and integrate global MEC physical frameworks, including facilities (e.g., power and cooling), monitoring, operational considerations, and security.”

The leader of each founding member organization commented on the potential the 5GFF has to accelerate the adoption of both 5G and MEC applications:

Rima Qureshi, chief strategy officer, Verizon: “5G is a key enabler of the next industrial revolution, where technology should transform how we live and work through applications including machine learning, autonomous industrial equipment, smart cars and cities, Internet of Things (IoT) and augmented and virtual reality.”

Daniel Hajj, América Móvil CEO: “We are in the right direction to bring more innovation to our customers and start delivering new 5G services, which should increase the quality and enhance the user experience through the adoption of MEC.”

Dr. Hongbeom Jeon, chief DX officer, KT Corp.: “With this groundwork firmly in place, the 5GFF partnership should continue to further motivate rich 5G innovations in the MEC space where state-of-the-art technologies like AI and AR/VR are to be seamlessly integrated for more competitive services.”

Jorge Fernandes, Chief Technology and Information Officer, Rogers Communications: “The capabilities and potential benefits that 5G should bring to consumers and businesses around the globe are seemingly limitless, and the 5G Future Forum will help accelerate the delivery of this technology at a global scale.”

Telstra’s Group Executive for Networks and IT, Nikos Katinakis:“5G and edge compute have the potential to truly revolutionize how organizations operate and be a game-changer for a range of applications.”

Johan Wibergh, Vodafone Group Chief Technology: “The speed and capacity of 5G, with the immediacy of MEC, can give economies the productivity boost needed to help them recover from the coronavirus pandemic. Through greater interoperability and closer collaboration, we can shorten the time it takes to develop new services using these technologies and make them available to many more customers over a wider geographical area.”

Over the past six months, the 5GFF leaders have created the governance structure and developed both the technical and commercial workstreams. Yahoo Finance reported that upon release of the specifications next month, the Forum plans to expand its membership to additional qualified applicants. 

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