Thanks to open source, 5G cracks 50% of the telecom market

While it's invisible to users, open-source software underlays all of 5G.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

SEATTLE--Odds are today that the smartphone by your side is now running 5G. For years, 5G wasn't able to deliver on its high-speed, low-latency promises. Things have changed. Today, 5G is finally delivering on its performance promises.  A big reason for that, proclaimed Arpit Joshipura, the Linux Foundation's general manager of Networking, Edge, and IoT at ONE Summit North America, a networking trade show, is 5G's open-source networking foundation. 

Joshipura said, "The industry has surpassed the tipping point when it comes to leveraging open source for enabling digital transformation. Leading organizations are using our projects' code -- which continues to evolve and mature -- in real-world deployments to scale."

How big a tipping point? According to Joshipura, 5G deployment is now over 50%. And according to some analysts, by 2030, 5G will reach $7 trillion -- that's trillion, not billion -- in economic value. 

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Behind all this, Joshipura said, "is a radical shift toward open networks and frameworks. This continues irrespective of economic and political headwinds. Indeed, open source is probably the only area that hasn't been impacted because of its ability to cross borders and boundaries to do what needs doing."

Open source has also brought businesses together. While the cloud and telecom companies still compete fiercely with each other in the marketplace, they've figured out that sharing open-source software and frameworks is a win-win. 

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Behind open-source networking is a wide variety of programs and projects. To incorporate these into an easy-to-use configuration, The Linux Foundation Networking LF Networking is pulling together an End-to-End, 5G Super Blueprint.

While still a work in progress, it maps out a way to bring together multiple open-source and cloud-native projects into a relatively simple 5G deployment map. It's designed so that any telecom can put together a high-bandwidth, low-latency, scalable, and cost-effective digital networking infrastructure all the way from end-user devices to the edge to cloud applications.

The present and the future of 5G belong to open-source and cloud-native software. The proof can be seen in the One Summit trade show halls and on your 5G-enabled phone in your pocket.

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