TECH SUPPLIER Mar 2020 - Market Perspective - Doc # US46158720

5G Transition Drives Semiconductor Growth from Clients to Core

By: Ben SheenResearch Director, Enabling Technologies: Networking & Communications Infrastructure, Phil SolisResearch Director, Connectivity and Smartphone Semiconductors

Abstract

This IDC Market Perspective provides a high-level and very wide view of the transition to 5G occurring in the mobile network ecosystem and on the client side as a backdrop for the semiconductor opportunity in mobile networks. The changes in the core network, baseband units, radio units, and client devices are discussed. Upcoming documents will go into detail about the opportunity for semiconductors in mobile networks and look at different parts of the mobile network in more depth in both commercial mobile networks and private cellular networks.

"Radio units are becoming very complex as they support massive MIMO in both sub-6GHz and mmWave spectrum, opening up opportunities for semiconductor vendors to offer innovative, high-performance solutions," said Phil Solis, research director, Connectivity and Smartphone Semiconductors at IDC. "Vendors that can reduce the cost and size of mmWave modules in the near term and shift to 4 x 4 beyond that will find success. On both the network and client side, power consumption and heating issues need to be solved."

"Baseband units are undergoing a fundamental change where processing is increasingly becoming virtualized, shifting the silicon opportunity from ASICs and ASSPs to general-purpose application processors in server-like systems," said Ben Sheen, research director, Networking and Communications Infrastructure at IDC. "This shift will permeate networks gradually but are necessary to reduce total system and silicon cost, which is critical to deploying dense mmWave 5G cells at scale."


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