The 5G-EMERGE project is developing a smart way of feeding media content to a range of terminal devices.
The concept involves intelligent management of edge-caching, with two types of cache: uplink edge caches (feeding satellite uplinks) and micro-edge caches (with proximity to the terminals).
A key development will be how to manage the uplink and micro-edge caches by pre-fetching media content into the caches on the basis of a recommendation algorithm. Not only would the algorithm propose content to a terminal based on its behaviour, but it would be used to fetch content to the caches in advance.
The diagram above shows all the actors and data-streams that need to be established in the 5G-EMERGE model, in which a common satellite stream serves different gateways and networks. The 5G-EMERGE ecosystem consists of operational services and optimised hardware for the different use cases.
The arrows illustrate the data streams and return channels, where the black ones are part of the 5G-EMERGE ecosystem, and the grey ones indicate communications using standard connections with the ecosystem.
Operationally, three main stages can be considered, as follows:
Popular content, with popularity based on real-time requests (reactive) and personalization preferences (pre-loading), is broadcast over a region (shown in #1, 2 and 3 above).
Optimized terminals for static or moving, home and professional use cases receive content and prepare it for playout (shown in #4, 5 and 6 above).
Standard playout devices make use of the (5G) network capabilities that are enhanced by the 5G-EMERGE ecosystem (#7 above)
Operational and business stakeholders
Content providers and aggregators
Companies providing online (media) services to end users. They provide the content ingest (origin server) and the application layer used to access the provided content. Their services apply network features enabled by the 5G-EMERGE ecosystem. Unicast connection from end users accessing the media service can be established with the 5G-EMERGE gateways.
5G-EMERGE operator and HW/SW provider
Operates and provides the HW/SW associated to the 5G-EMERGE service including the communication with the distributed micro-edge devices and the processing of popular content as uplink/downlink service.
The satcom provider operates satellite network to multicast popular content over a specific region. It also provides unicast internet traffic to facilitate services in case no better (capacity/price) backhaul is available.
Hardware/system provider who produces and /or integrates the 5G-EMERGE Gateway optimized for reception in moving vehicles – in cars, airplanes, trains and ships.
Hardware/system provider who produces and /or integrates the 5G-EMERGE Gateway optimized for reception in fixed locations such as apartment buildings, apartment blocks, housing communities or individual homes.
Direct-to-edge node: xNodeB
Hardware/system provider who produces and /or integrates the 5G-EMERGE Gateway optimized for 5G networks and MNOs who operate the network. Or V2I/V2N application providers that use micro-edge devices for their services.
Direct-to-node: network head-end
Hardware/system provider who produces and /or integrates the 5G-EMERGE Gateway optimized for ISP head-end and ISPs (or delegated service providers) deploying this terminal in the network.
End-users accessing services from content providers who use the 5G-EMERGE ecosystem. Their devices apply functionalities of the local 5G Edge server which improves the QoE (for example by caching) or extends features (for example reach).
Functionalities to be developed
5G network slices virtualizing the satellite operation and integrating the functions of distributed micro-edge devices with those operating closer to the core network.
Caching algorithms based on proxy caching (reactive), personalization (proactive) and segmentation (repurpose of live feeds) applied in the 5G network slice.
Uplinking, downlinking, reception (using both software and COTS based simulators/emulator and existing antennas to test reception scenarios of moving vehicles, home networks and operator networks), return channel integration and contribution to applications running on the cloud layer of the micro-edge devices.
Content preparation including caching, device playout optimization, localized content ingestion (including advertisements, business scenarios), segmentation, etc.
Business requirements provisioning as in multi-tenant support (end users and providers), security (DRM link protection), trackability (blockchain).