Anthony McLachlan is Ciena's general manager and vice president for the Asia-Pacific region.

In Asia-Pacific (APAC) the opportunities and challenges brought by 5G will be greater and more immediate than in any other region. A new paper published by Analysys Mason reveals that Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in Asia-Pacific need to act now to ready their wireline networks for 5G.  The Impact of 5G on Wireline Networks in Asia-Pacific outlines how the arrival of 5G will rely on fiber-based networks that will interconnect the 5G new radios.

The study recommends that while 5G standards are still being developed, MNOs must upgrade their wireline networks to support the expected growth in wireless broadband and new 5G applications. However, in a survey across APAC countries conducted by Analysys Mason, it emerged that fewer than 25% of MSOs are building their 5G radio plan along with their wireline plan.

Bottom line is that for MNOs to keep pace with the demand for mobile data services while improving their revenue mix and profitability with new 5G driven applications, they need to take a holistic, software-defined approach to building their 5G network.  By making a network in which fiber and radio are equal partners, MNOs will have a network that enables huge increases in affordable coverage and capacity; introduces deterministic behaviors into the network; and has the flexibility to support a variety of different services.

In a survey across APAC countries conducted by Analysys Mason, it emerged that fewer than 25% of MSOs are building their 5G radio plan along with their wireline plan.

The network build pace needs to change if MNOs are to be ready to deploy 5G in 2020.  If operators do not adopt an integrated, software-defined and intelligent approach to their 5G deployments, including catering for mission critical services delivery, they will fall behind other operators in the region.

To learn more about the study findings, watch this on-demand webinar where Analysys Mason and Ciena provide unique insights into the challenges and impact of 5G on wireline networks in Asia-Pacific. Webinar attendees will receive a pre- release copy of the paper The Impact of 5G on Wireline Networks in Asia-Pacific.