While the term 5G is nearly synonymous with mobile devices, multiple technologies are required to make it work. At the same, these networks are increasingly leveraged by businesses in addition to consumers. To aid Communication Services Providers (CoSPs) in meeting the demand, Intel has stepped up with its 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors and related technologies.
Today's 5G demands
It seems the only thing faster than 5G is its growth. Cell phone giant Ericcson predicts monthly data traffic will reach 226 exabytes per month by 2026, which will increase 450% over 2021.
Therefore, it makes sense that CoSPs are constantly upgrading their networks to keep pace. Only there's more to the story than handling increased data volume. The platforms supporting 5G networks must also address things like:
- Power Optimization
- Operational efficiency
- Service Agility
Intel's 5G approach
Under the hood of every mobile network are platforms working 24/7 to receive, process, and send data. Without the steady improvement of these servers, network appliances, and supporting software, 5G networks would never be able to deliver on their promise of performance.
When engineering the 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, Intel understood the current and future demands of 5G and designed them accordingly. Therefore, they chose to include enhancements to throughput, memory, security, power consumption, and overall performance.
And within the 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processor family, the N (Networking Optimized) SKUs deliver the best performance per watt of any Intel processor. In addition, greater throughput is achieved thanks to virtual network functions (VNFs) and cloud-native functions (CNFs). And lower power consumption allows for denser deployments.
3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors - specific performance enhancements
Delivering with the diligent research we've come to expect, Intel's new family of processors offers the following generation-over-generation enhancements to support CoSPs in their 5G initiatives:
- Increased instructions per clock (IPC) - Intel's latest processors offer a 20% generation over generation improvement, enabling the best possible performance.
- More cores for better performance - Intel has increased the maximum cores to 40, with a 20 to 36 core range available for network-optimized processors.
- Greater overall performance - The latest generation provides 62% more performance over the prior generation for 5G workloads
- Improved user plane function (UPF) performance - 5G UPF performance improved by 42% over the 2nd generation
- Cryptography acceleration - The latest generation of Intel processors includes an instruction set designed specifically for acceleration cryptography. (Research?)
- Overall performance increases - CoSPs can benefit from an overall performance increase of 88% for single-core processors and a 95% improvement system-wide.
While when it comes to 5G platforms, efficiency is paramount, successful deployments must be able to use power strategically, or their cost of ownership can erode profitability. To this end, Intel has taken a serious look at power efficiency by delivering the following improvements:
- Performance-per-watt improvement - CoSPs can enjoy a performance-per-watt improvement of 16% over the prior generation of Intel processors.
- Dynamic device personalization - This feature improves system performance by adding packet processing intelligence.
- Cluster power optimization - With the 3rd generation of processors, administrators can enable and disable cores based on real-time usage.
- Server-integrated power controls - These enhancements permit policy-based power control to shift operating frequency and load in a server cluster to save power during peak hours.
- Workload integrated power - This function allows applications to adjust their performance point dynamically.
Improved security for 5G workloads
Of course, the growth of any network can create new vulnerabilities. Intel has taken steps to secure data and platforms with technologies that eliminate the processing toll of full data encryption. These include accelerating both Vector Packet Processing (VPP)and IPsec forwarding.
Intel has also leveraged its Software Guard Extensions (SGX)to protect data via application isolation and provide hardened enclaves for private key storage.
Define the future of your 5G network today
While handling the onslaught of 5G traffic may seem daunting, CoSPs aren't alone. Thanks to innovators like Intel, new demands on 5G networks can be met with new technologies. And when it comes to designing and building the right platforms for your network, Intel partners like UNICOM Engineering are here to help.
As an Intel Technology Provider, UNICOM Engineering has helped drive the latest solutions with our partners for decades. Our skilled team actively designs solutions based on the latest 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, Intel Optane persistent memory 200 series, Intel SmartNIC and Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapters, and Intel Optane SSDs. Our customers benefit from solutions optimized for telecom, cloud, enterprise, network, security, IoT, and HPC workloads with expanded I/O, storage, and network connectivity options by leveraging our services. Learn more about how UNICOM Engineering can help you transition to next-gen solutions by scheduling a consultation.