Video services like augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR) concentrating on more than just entertainment but vertical and industrial application. 5G smart connections and intelligent cloud delivery will enable new forms of video services to become more effective and efficient in this generation.
Samuel Chen, Huawei's president of cloud & data centre marketing, shared his view on the industry development and the company's positioning in the 5G video services sector during an interview with IBC TV.
Samuel Chen said future video during the 5G generation will carry four characteristics:
- Ultra-high-definition (UHD) content including 4K, 8K, and all other bandwidth-demanding content will emerge as a mainstream option in the market
- Content located on the cloud will be everywhere and will facilitate efficient content aggregation. This will allow service providers to offer service diversity effectively
- Cloud delivery of video services will enable future video services to become more effective and efficient
- AI will enable intelligent video services to have the capabilities of being "individualised", "on-demand", and "dynamic-changing"
As for Huawei's strategy, we position video as an enabler to all industries beyond just being an entertainment service but AR VR and vertical/industrial video service as well, which leverage ultra-fast speeds, the exceptional capabilities of low latency, and multiple 5G connections via cloud delivery.
The challenges of launching VR services?
We can look at it with two perspectives when delving into the challenges of VR. First, VR services suffer from complex terminal setup, which requires a powerful console and cable connection to VR helmets. The hardware is also very expensive ($1500 on average) which means it's hard to accept for families. If every VR service received mass adoption, transformation of VR hardware would be desperately needed.
Second, VR experiences demand high frame rate, such as 60 frames per second (FPS), 90FPS, or higher for smooth playback. It also requires very low latency, such as <20ms for strong interactions when using VR or AR for gaming. As a result, unnecessarily large amounts of traffic congestion in the backbone and core network are created.
Interestingly, the possible solution for these two issues has been made in China. The answer indeed can be found at the edge of Telco networks with Huawei Media Edge Cloud.
First, in order to get rid of the expensive VR setup while still having an all-in-one VR glasses that can be sold at a fraction of the current cost, this cannot be achieved without moving VR capabilities from a local console or PC onto the cloud. From fast data transmission to huge storage, and computation-intensive rendering tasks required by VR, all of which are now transferred onto the Huawei Media Edge cloud. It has greatly reduced the requirements of VR terminals and made it possible for ecosystem VR manufacturers to produce them at prices that are similar to smartphones. Currently, a 4K resolution VR headset is sold below $250 in China and breaking through into the family mass market nationwide now.
Second, traditional, centralised cloud services no longer meet the VR requirements of low latency and large bandwidth. VR services demand high frame rates, such as 60FPS, 90FPS, or even higher for smooth playback. It also requires strong interactions on 360 FOV and gaming response, as well as high bandwidth consumption. Therefore, a decentralised cloud solution, such as Media Edge Cloud, has been designed to extend the capabilities from central to the network edge. This serves two purposes:
- Deploying VR rendering on the edge reduces the use of bandwidth by 30% during transmission and reduces the backbone traffic congestion
- Media edge will effectively reduce transmission distance to create less latency which will facilitate interaction experience improvements in 8K, VR, AR, and gaming.
Most importantly, Huawei Media Edge Cloud has been designed to be an open ecosystem that actually makes use of the Telco network's edge value to offer 3rd party services with an advance QoS video experience and GPU driven applications to end-users.
As said before, the new forms of video, such as 8K, VR/AR, and cloud gaming, are so demanding that they can only be achieved with video infrastructure that moves closer to the end-user at the network edge. This is because new video experiences simply cannot be achieved easily without the computing power and media processing capability on the network edge. Only Telcos, by nature, are having this distinct and unique value on their network that no-one else does.
Once again Telcos are again discovering a unique video service network position. With Huawei's solution, it's possible for Telcos to develop 2B media edge cloud as a capability business to the ecosystem for vertical video service collaboration.
Huawei connects the ecosystem and solution to all video industries with a focus on AI, Media Edge Cloud, and Cloud services in 5G video generation. This is through:
✔ Infrastructure enablement. This includes 5G, Giga-broadband network, core network, and data centres
✔ Technology enablements such as Huawei's Hisilicon chipset, Media Edge Cloud, VR/AR development, and AI capabilities
✔ Cloud service enablement includes our Huawei Cloud, Video Cloud, Cloud VR, and managed service
✔ Ecosystem enablement (that) we develop and bridge our partners to all markets, to all regions and to all industries
Want to know more about 5G video and what 5G is deploying in market, visit here.