The huge operations issue for 5G, getting Cloud Operations Staff

I have been in Seattle area for 27 years. And the area is known for being cloudy.


The top cloud companies Amazon and Microsoft are headquartered here. Google has a large presence. Faceebook too. Seattle has the highest concentration of cloud workforce in the world. T-mobile is headquartered here. AT&T has a large presence in Redmond.

5G requires a cloud-native core. You go to Ericsson, Huawei, and Nokia’s 5G architecture and they all mention cloud. Here is Nokia.

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Chatting with a friends and family we have made the observation that it is extremely hard to hire cloud operations staff. If you want to learn and be trained you go to Amazon, Microsoft, or Google. And many go to multiple. Then you look for whether you want to go to a startup and try that path or be a free agent go where is the top money and build up your resume. In this plan do any of these people say I am going to spend 5-10 years working on my resume then I am going to work for a Telco. No. Every Telco has failed with its own cloud services. What would lead an educated cloud expert to think going to a Telco will be worth their time. Seems riskier to go to a Telco than going to a startup.

Now some of you may disagree with this view. That’s OK. The problem is there are lots of cloud people who have no plans to even look at a Telco cloud operations job. So the Telco is faced with the option to retrain its existing staff for cloud operations which is being done with SDN, NFV, and VNF. Yeah try to figure out what that stuff does and how it fits together. :-) And it requires system level skills as a service based architecture is about how all the pieces work together.

On top of that the number of 5G radios deployed will grow a magnitude or more to support the latency, throughput, and range issues of the new spectrums.

If you listen to the 5G hype you think it is right around the corner. The problem is cloud operations staff will severely limit rollouts at scale.

Adding the other stuff to construction and wireless

Making construction information system works requires wireless. Well you can try it without wireless and you will not get far. To get wireless to work there is a lot of details you need to work on. Like how do you divide up the wireless Internet connection between the different users and their devices.

Let’s go through this example. I’ll be using my home business network as an example. I have a 150 mbps Comcast business connection. I have 7 WiFI access points in three different buildings all tied together into a wireless controller. Why a WiFi controller? Because that is how I get the performance data from each of the wireless access points and can see the wireless connections to each device.

Before that is an open source router, pfSense. On pfSense you can run traffic shaping.

Traffic shaping is a bandwidth management technique used on computer networks which delays some or all datagrams to bring them into compliance with a desired traffic profile.[1][2] Traffic shaping is used to optimize or guarantee performance, improve latency, or increase usable bandwidth for some kinds of packets by delaying other kinds. It is often confused with traffic policing, the distinct but related practice of packet dropping and packet marking.[3]

When I first turned off traffic shaping the test to see how well things work is how well did my son’s xbox games play. He was beating his friends playing a range of games, because my son now had a dedicated bandwidth so he was not dropping packets if the network was being hit by other high traffic loads.

Most consumer solutions WiFi will maximize speeds for a given user to allow speedtest numbers to be as high as possible. When I run a speed test I’ll get numbers below the 150 mbps limit as the traffic shaping software manages how much connection any one device can get and makes sure there is capacity in reserve for higher priority uses like VOIP or video calls.

This is just one example of the other stuff to discuss to make wireless work in construction.