How to deploy a private 5G network?

Having an own private 5G network becomes an essential for the digital transition of enterprises and manufacturers today, but it is not a one-size-fits-all! Private 5G can be deployed in different ways depending on the needs. Overview.

A 5G network consists of multiple components: a core network that is connected to your enterprise network, a radio network which is made up of multiple antennas. Furthermore, the network to connect these two, often referred to as transmission or backhaul network

To start: determine the size of your network

If there is only a single geographical location to deploy the private 5G infrastructure, it remains relatively simple. In this case, you need to consider how many devices you want to connect to the network, which services you want to use in order to estimate the required bandwidth and the required coverage that needs to be provided by the radio network. The latter determines the amount and the type of antenna, i.e. indoor and/or outdoor antennas.

Next, connect the components

When this radio planning is done, the transport network needs to be in place to connect each antenna via optical or Ethernet to the core network. The core network can be deployed together with your other IT applications on site. As a last step, the core network is connected to the enterprise network, so that the 5G devices can have access to different applications and internet. 

In the situation where there are multiple sites to cover, the Dome solution has the flexibility to be deployed in various ways. 

Deploying a mobile private network requires a bit of skills, like configuring the radio and core parameters, but gives you the freedom to adjust the network exactly to your needs.

Wendy Ooms Product Manager

Which architecture to choose for a multi-site deployment?

Option 1: centralized solution

The first option is to have a centralized solution, where the core network is located in one or two centralized datacenters. On each remote site that needs coverage of the private 5G network, the necessary antennas are installed. With this architecture, additional locations are easy to add, by only adding the required radio network equipment on site. 

 Option 2: edge computing

This second option can be interesting in case each site has a high volume of traffic that can be handled locally. In this situation, not only the radio network but also the user plane function, who transports data of the core network are deployed on the remote site. This architecture is often referred to as edge computing. The control plane of the core network, where only session handling is managed, is centralized for efficiency. The whole network acts as one, but benefits from local traffic handling, which for example reduces the required bandwidth between the remote and central sites. 

Other option?

Sometimes maximum isolation is required between different sites, for this situation a third architecture is proposed. Each site will have its own instance of the private 5G network. This ensures operations can continue even if there are connectivity problems between sites. 

Do it yourself or have it done?

It is important to ask yourself whether or not you want to deploy the private 5G network yourself, or to have it done by a third party. The same goes for the management of the network after deployment. Deploying a mobile private network within your own company requires a bit of skills, like how to plan the radio network to avoid interference, but gives you the freedom to adjust the network exactly to your needs, including possible future additions. 

Managing a private 5G infrastructure does not have to be very complex and could be done by the IT department. It does require a basic knowledge of the particularities of mobile networks, like how mobility between cells works, and possible problems that can be encountered. Whether you want to do it yourself or are looking for an integrator or a managed service provider, Obvios can provide a private 5G network with the Dome solution.