November 22, 2017

Future scenarios and value network configurations for industrial 5G

Billions of connected devices with new application requirements, deployment scenarios and business models will emerge in the future. 5G will follow both evolutionary path, that is, enhanced mobile broadband and coverage, and revolutionary path, that is, massive and critical Machine Type Communications (MTC). These MTC, also known as Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications in the local area factory automation context are the focus of this paper. Uncertainty exists in how the market will shape up, which communication technologies will be utilized and who takes up different roles that exist in the ecosystem. This paper performs a techno-economic analysis of 5G local area industrial M2M communications for 2020 and beyond. The paper applies Schoemaker's scenario planning method to identify and analyze key trends and uncertainties to construct a scenario matrix with four alternate future scenarios that help stakeholders understand, plan and strategize. This paper also builds alternative value network configurations to analyze the distribution of roles and value creation among different business actors for 5G. A comparison table of the value networks and their mapping on the scenario matrix is also provided to compare and help understand the possible co-existence of different value networks in the future.

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