Ericsson: 5G could ‘dramatically increase’ network energy consumption


By Davine Janssen |


It is the industry’s responsibility to roll-out the fifth generation (5G) of wireless communication networks without increasing energy consumption, Swedish telecoms giant Ericsson writes in a report outlining how this can be done.

“Energy consumption is set to increase dramatically if 5G is deployed in the same way as 3G and 4G were,” Ericsson warns in a report published in March.

“Some communications service providers have even estimated a doubling of their energy consumption to meet increasing traffic demands while improving their network and rolling out 5G,” writes Erik Ekudden, Senior VP, CTO and Head of Group Function Technology at Ericsson, in a foreword to the report.

“This is not sustainable from a cost or environmental perspective,” he warns.

At the same time, 5G  is “the most energy-aware standard,” he continues, citing technological improvements such as smarter sleep modes and more efficient data transmission, which could help reduce the energy consumption of connected devices.

These features, combined with a new approach to network roll-out, make it possible to “quadruple data traffic without increasing energy consumption,” he believes.

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