The latest plenary meeting of the 3GPP Technical Specifications Groups (TSG#72) in Busan, Korea, has agreed on a detailed work plan for Release-15, the first release of 5G specifications. The plan includes a set of intermediate tasks and check-points to guide the ongoing studies in the various Working Groups. Key dates to watch out for:
- September 2016: completion of Technical Report on New Radio (NR) requirements
- December 2016: start of SA2 normative work on Next Generation (NexGen) architecture
- March 2017: the beginning of the RAN Working Group’s specification of the 5G NR.
The 3GPP also made progress during the Busan meeting on defining the new radio (NR) access standard, agreeing the target scope for its eventual inclusion in Release 15. It has been decided that the NR must work in both standalone and non-standalone configurations – and by non-standalone they mean using LTE as the control plane anchor. Standalone mode implies full control plane capability for the NR. This is made possible because of the agreement to separate the control plane from the data plane, which is a familiar concept if you have been following TelecomTV’s coverage of NFV and next generation architectures.