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Practical Aspects for the Integration of 5G Networks and IoT Applications in Smart Cities Environments

Daniel Minoli and Benedict Occhiogrosso

New open source publication for Wiley and Hindawi for the Wireless Communications and Mobile Computing journal

Both 5G cellular and IoT technologies are expected to see widespread deployment in the next few years. At the practical level, 5G will see initial deployments in urban areas. This is perhaps fortuitous from an IoT perspective, since many “mainstream” applications of IoT will support Smart Cities, Smart Campuses and Smart Buildings. Bandwidth demand for a number of Smart City applications is the main driver for enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB)-based 5G services in general, and new-generation 5G IoT applications, in particular. In turn, the use of the millimeter wave spectrum is required to enable 5G cellular technologies to support high data rates. Millimeter wave solutions, however, impose a requirement for small cells. Generally, an implementer tries to use one or a small handful of IoT technologies; preferably, and for managerial simplicity, the implementer would want to use a cellular/5G IoT technology for all nodes, whether indoors or outdoors, instead of a heterogenous mix of various IoT technologies that have evolved over the years. This overview paper discusses a number of practical issues related to 5G-based IoT applications, particularly in Smart City environments, including the need for small cells, the transmission issues at millimeter wave frequencies, building penetration issues, the need for Distributed Antenna Systems, and the near term introduction of pre-5G IoT technologies such as NB-IoT and LTE-M, these being possible proxies for the commercial deployment and acceptance of 5G IoT.