Thursday, 08 November 2018 13:02

Huawei and China Mobile unveil first 8K VR 5G broadcast at 5th World Internet Conference


China Mobile's 5G Innovation Centre "worked closely with Huawei to unveil the first 5G network based 8K VR live broadcast", showcasing one way 5G will change our virtual and actual realities.

With Huawei stating that "VR is destined to become a popular future application and is already increasingly recognised throughout the industry as one of the top 5G services", virtual reality might finally reach its true potential.

That said, I personally think that augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed realities are the true future, but with 5G dominating industry headlines over the past few years, it's clear that we'll need such super high-speed mobile services to take humanity into the next generation of ubiquitous and totally personalised computing.

Huawei notes that "technically mature 4K VR live broadcast requires 50–80 Mbps data rates", but states that "8K VR services require a higher data rate of 100–160 Mbps and wider bandwidth".

We're told that "the faster network speed and increased display resolution will allow users to benefit from a more detailed, true-to-life, and immersive experience".

So, how was the 8K VR 5G live broadcast done?

Well, the explanation is that the "8K VR live broadcast was provided courtesy of a 5G network instituted by Zhejiang Mobile, which comprises Huawei-developed 5G C-band sites and the core network".

"Owing to the favourable uplink and downlink transmission conditions (bandwidth over 100 MHz) in the 5G network, the 8K VR 360-degree camera captured picturesque South Lake views and then uploaded the compiled videos for cloud rendering in real time.

"The scenery videos were then downloaded at an ultra-high 5G speed to VR headsets. The breathtaking panorama of islands scattered throughout the lake, combined with red boats and gardens feature such vividly accurate colours and rich details that allow audiences to enjoy a fully immersive and mesmerising sightseeing experience."

Here's a photo of "5G 8K VR broadcasting of South Lake, Jiaxing" in China:

We're then informed that VR broadcasts are "expected to rise as a new type of 5G application, as well as the most important service under the eMBB umbrella".

"8K VR live broadcast is set to be widely adopted throughout the industry. Users can not only enjoy scenic spots, concerts, and sports events without stepping out of their own homes, but also gain access to gaming, entertainment videos, healthcare, real estate, retail, distance learning, engineering, and a whole host of other incredible new services.

"VR will help to fuel the progress of 5G and play a crucial role in transforming the entire society."

Here's a photo of someone "Experiencing 5G 8K broadcasting of WuZhen at the World Internet Conference":

Huawei then states that the "the 8K display effect is the key to offering virtualised reality to all users, and the advanced display technology requires an ultra-high transmission data rate enabled by 5G".

"The 5G network utilizsed in the demonstration deploys Huawei C-band base stations. Thanks to scenario-specific smart beams and 3D beamforming, Huawei 5G C-band AAUs boast flexible and precise cell coverage control and can deliver Gbps-level ultimate user experience. Dozens of base stations were deployed by Zhejiang Mobile and Huawei.

"In addition, China Mobile and Huawei jointly verified multiple 5G key solutions in terms of cell throughput, single-user peak data rate, and user experienced data rate.

"The two companies also took the opportunity to launch three 5G innovative services with 100 Mbps data rate: 5G 8K VR live broadcast, 8K live broadcast, and in-ambulance telemedicine.

"This is the debut of these services in the industry. China Mobile 5G Innovation Center will continue in cooperation with industry partners, jointly working on the exploration and innovation on 5G applications, pushing forward the 5G ecosystem to maturity, and 5G applications to be commercially launched."


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.



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