RF/microwave Industry Predictions and Trends for 2022
MWJ Swami Hindle, ADI, Renesas, Vicor, Movandi, Wilson Electronics, SEMPRE, Ericsson and Keysight
It is time for the Microwave Journal annual predictions for 2022. Swami Hindle and a group of companies including ADI, Renesas, Vicor, Movandi, Wilson Electronics, SEMPRE and Ericsson give their industry predictions and trends for the future. Here is what Swami Hindle is predicting:
- Design engineers will turn their attention to 5G Advanced enhancements with 5G NR Release 18 published and Research will turn its full attention to 6G.
- mmWave will finally take off with FWA, IAB and repeater applications for 5G plus SATCOM applications (I probably said this last year and the year before) but there will be much consolidation of mmWave companies.
- 4D automotive radar with optical systems will show the way to full level 5 autonomy for cars. These sensors will also start to be implemented on vehicles such taxis, moving trucks and vehicles, e-scooters and e-bikes.
- Hypersonic missiles and defense systems will be tested several times by the US and China.
- China and the US competition in the area of Quantum Computing will heat up with each setting several records for the number of qubits
- The flavors of GaN will expand widely in use cases where each makes sense: GaN on SiC, GaN on Si, GaN on diamond, high voltage GaN, epiGaN, etc.
- 3D printing/Additive Manufacturing will expand widely in RF/microwave applications from PCBs to antennas to waveguides.
- Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will be widely used for circuit/device optimization to set new levels in performance/efficiency and be more widely implemented in devices/circuit simulation.
- Drone delivery services and drone remote monitoring (for farm monitoring, bridge/power line inspection, etc.) will be implemented widely.
- Precision positioning will take off with several consumer and industrial applications.
Go to the next page for 2022 predictions from ADI.
Regionalization Semiconductor Technology for Critical Infrastructure – Analog Devices
John Cowles - Senior Director of Technology
It has been recognized for years that advanced semiconductor manufacturing and packaging capabilities mostly shifted to east Asia over the last several decades. Competitive costs, continuous reinvestment in next generation technologies and excellent customer service all justified this regional consolidation. The near-fabless model in the West allowed for a flexible, as-needed outsourcing model and obviated the need for huge capital and operational investment in fabs and packaging facilities. In just a couple of years, the geopolitical strains around the world and the supply chain misalignment to demand during Covid have raised alarms across the West around the availability, security and integrity of critical technologies that underpin its infrastructure. This goes far beyond Defense applications; it encompasses all critical segments like Telecom, Energy, Automotive and Industrial, all of which are benefiting from increases electrification and semiconductor content.
- Semiconductors will increasingly be viewed as a key element of national and regional security. The increased dependence of nations, governments, industries and citizens on the electronics behind the infrastructure will make access to these technologies national priorities, either through strategic alliances or on-shoring critical capabilities. Government investments and policies will pair with industry to ensure the supremacy in semiconductor research and manufacturing. Both the Chips for America Act and the European Chip Act will inject critical funding in the US and Europe to incentivize the private, commercial sector to invest further in on-shoring critical semiconductor manufacturing.
- Investments across multiple regions will skyrocket to provide more resilience against supply chain disruption, whether by natural or geopolitical events. Such investments are also likely to drive local policies to prioritize domestic sources over foreign ones. The question of scale within smaller geographies will challenge their profitability. The end-result is likely higher costs of semiconductors across the board.
- Different models will exist for different technologies. Legacy nodes on 8 inch wafers like 0.18um will require a different approach than 65/28nm nodes on 12 inch wafers which will differ from the most advanced FinFET-based nodes at 16nm and below. Then there are specialized technologies like BCD-CMOS, SiGe, SOI, GaAs/GaN and MEMS that may be lower volume but are nevertheless critical in certain applications. The scale and costs for each of these families will dictate whether internal, dedicated manufacturing investments are needed or shared, foundry entities need to be established.
- Besides the availability of the components, there is growing concern with the intrinsic security of the underlying IP and tampering of the content. There are creative ways being proposed to address these issues with everything from mixed manufacturing where the IP is applied late in the process at a secure facility to clever identification of unwanted changes to the IP. Even today, FPGAs do not host IP until they are programmed close to the end application. As long as the hardware has not been tampered and malicious software has not been embedded before shipping, the risks are much lower than a digital ASIC. A systematic process of assessing these risks will become part of the decision tree around component selection and possibly drive the system architecture around security risk, rather than just cost, schedule and performance.
- While the focus of investments has been primarily around semiconductor manufacturing, packaging is also of critical importance. Lead times attributed to packaging such as lead-frames and laminates, are a significant contributor to the overall delays that have reached an astounding 12 months or longer. The dynamics around packaging are different from semiconductor manufacturing. While a fab requires huge capex investments in advanced equipment and installations, a packaging facility is more heavily influenced by opex around labor. Local investments in packaging to accompany those in semiconductor manufacturing are lower but also need to be made.
Multi-Function Radar and Electronic Warfare (EW)
Ben Annino - Systems and Applications Director
Multi-Function Radar and Electronic Warfare (EW) applications put a high value on wideband, high dynamic range, agile spectral monitoring. Digitization has been progressively inching closer to the antenna enabling wider instantaneous BW, mission reconfigurability and smaller SWAP-C, all while maintaining or even improving dynamic range. The coming year will see increasingly higher sample rate data converters allowing architecture changes to the radio front end that shrinks SWAP-C, maintains performance, and evolves toward software programmability. We predict that the wideband digital radio is on the verge of a complete architectural overhaul.
Spectral Sensing In Olden Days
Not too long ago, data converters could only cover a few hundred MHz instantaneous bandwidth (iBW). They’d be sampled up to a few GSPS, and the bandwidth might be centered around DC (Zero-IF aka ZIF) or centered around an IF offset. ZIF requires IQ modulators and demodulators as well as quadrature error correction (QEC), which make it unattractive for many ADEF applications requiring very wide iBW and spectral coverage. Bandwidth-hungry Radar and EW prefer the latter IF sampling approach, direct sampling wide iBW in the 1st and 2nd Nyquist zones. To cover spectrum outside the Nyquist zones, an RF tuner uses a swept LO mixer to frequency translate a sliding block of IBW into the fixed IF that matches up with the data converter direct sample zone. Due to the low IF sampling, old systems use dual mixer stages in order to get adequate image rejection. These are large and expensive.
Spectral Sensing Today (MXFE)
Today’s wideband spectral sensing approach has improved because present day ADC sample rates in the several-GHz range are high enough that you can direct sample the intermediate IF following that first mixer above. The RF tuner often doesn’t need 2 mixer stages anymore. The 2nd Nyquist IF direct sampling is high enough in frequency to allow adequate frequency spacing of the desired input RF band and image band so that an attainable RF filter can do the job. RF filters are still complex, large and expensive, but big savings is had eliminating an entire frequency translation stage.
Spectral Sensing in the Near Future
The coming year will see high sample rate RF sampling digital converters that gets us to true wideband software defined radio. These digital converters direct samples at an even higher IF, separating the desired and image band far enough that lower-Q tunable MMIC filters are adequate. You will finally eliminate a great number of planar hi-Q ceramic filters which is a big SWAP-C savings. Even better, the filters will go from fixed (every use case has a custom set of filters) to tunable. This means a single wideband hardware configuration will be software programmed to optimize the right performance trade for many customer frequency schemes across many use-cases.
Integrated frequency translation ICs employing sub-octave RF filtering and gain control were hard to nail down in the past because everybody’s use case, frequency plan, and resulting RF/IF filtering was different and high performance. Things are about to change drastically. The single IC integrated tuner will be natively wideband with built-in RF filtering capability to software-define operating bands and rejection bands. So, the integrated tuner becomes more one-size-fits-many across customer use-cases and frequency plans.
In the coming year we will see radio performance differentiation accelerate its shift from high performance RF to high performance RF direct sampling, with an emphasis on software defined, adaptive RF signal conditioning. Flexibility and multi-function configurability becomes the focus.
2022 Predictions Phased Array Radar and Development Platforms
Jerome Patoux, Marketing Director - Aerospace & Defense
Jon Bentley Product Marketing Director – Aerospace & Defense
Phased Array technology continues to evolve driven by a need for increasing performance, flexibility and capability. Hybrid architectures employing distributed mixed signal converter nodes feeding RF beamforming subarrays are commonplace today. In the coming year we will see a continuing trend to more mixed signal nodes feeding smaller RF sub-arrays as RF sampling pushes toward the individual elements. Challenges such as digital processing bandwidth at acceptable cost and power will continue to prevent wideband every-element digital beamforming in the near term.
Large investments are pushing rapid advancement in mixed signal data converter bandwidth and power efficiency, every-element wideband digital beamforming is becoming more practical. This trend will continue into 2022 and gather pace as investments in semiconductor technology (i.e. Silicon, Gallium Nitride and Gallium Arsenide processes), integration and digital processing capabilities, make full elemental digital beamforming at higher frequencies more realizable, efficient, and scalable across large arrays.
At higher frequencies, challenges with data throughput are linked to higher processing requirements for the baseband processors and power consumption will increase. To cope with this problem, some compromises are made with regards to the converter performance (lower resolution and power). This leads to usually undesirable trade-offs in signal degradation and overall performance and flexibility at the system level.
With more converter channels and with those converters located closer to the array antenna elements, array gain improves SNR but front end adaptive RF signal conditioning is required to preserve dynamic range in blocker environments. Digital beamforming better supports adjustments to the mission or multiple missions and this can be all configurable via software. The multi-mission capability of digital beamforming systems allows for Size and Weight optimization in space constrained radar end equipment, such as airborne systems.
New solutions and platforms alleviate these challenges by offering lower power, ultra-high performance mixed converter front ends, standalone or implemented as part of sub-system solutions or development platforms. These sub-systems or platforms reduce engineering efforts and time to market for radar designers who seek industry leading performance while optimizing size, weight, power and cost (SWAP-C) with higher reliability even in severe environments.
Incumbent hybrid architectures offering digital simplicity and trade-offs in SWaP-C will remain. An X-Band hybrid beamforming bits-to-beam radar development platform that offers a complete 32 channel transmit and 32 channel receive antenna-to-bits solution is an example of a platform that demonstrates full array performance from antennas to bits and helps customers design-in more quickly so they can focus on higher system level issues. This platform integrates ADC and DAC solutions with RF microwave up and down converter circuitry and integrated analog beamforming ICs to evaluate a full hybrid beamforming signal chain solution.
Another example is the 16 channel transmit and receive Quad MxFE phased array direct sampling system solution, supporting L, S and C bands that can assist in the design of a full digital beamforming system. This architecture showcases multiple-chip synchronization and system level calibrations. The system plugs into a COTS FPGA board with reference HDL code and MATLAB software. A separate calibration board is used to facilitate calibrations and verification of system level phase noise, spurious and dynamic range performances.
Digital beamforming offers several benefits particularly the flexibility to program multiple antenna beams simultaneously in many directions but has its challenges with synchronization, SWAP-C trade-offs and processing the high volume of digital data. A system alternative that we believe will remain for some time is to use a subarray architecture with a mix of both analog and digital beamforming where a full digital implementation is considered not practical or constrained by system cost.
Development platforms that showcase capability, help reduce time to market and solve complex engineering challenges faced during the design cycle, start to gather momentum. We predict an uptake of these platforms to assist in current and future R&D efforts.
Go to the next page for Renesas predictions.
Industry Predictions for Smart Homes
Omer Cheema, Head of IoT Wi-Fi Business Unit at Renesas Electronics
- Smart homes will become context aware. Earlier iterations of smart homes were based on simple rules (e.g., if temp is above 25C, turn on the AC). We see a long-term trend where new smart homes will actually understand the full context of environments. For example, they will be able to recognize that people are in the room, understand their needs and adjust the environment according to the specific tastes and needs of the individual. As we head into 2022, this trend of truly smart context-aware smart homes will gain further momentum. We expect to see an explosion of context-aware products that will allow home to become truly smart.
- Smart homes will become easier to install. When you buy a phone or laptop today, it simply works as soon as you unbox it. In order to see the broader adoption of smart homes, we need a similar level of “out of box” experience. More and more IoT device makers are building products that are easy to install and setup. As Wi-Fi is a ubiquitous technology, we believe Wi-Fi based products can enable an “out of box” experience that Zigbee/Z-wave-based IoT products don’t offer. Today’s consumers are just looking for low cost, plug and play setup of their smart homes. Thanks to advances in Wi-Fi technology, next year we’ll start to see a more simplified smart home set up, enabling greater adoption of smart homes overall.
- Smart homes will become more secure. The right to privacy is a key aspect of the universal declaration of human rights. Home, by definition, is the center of our private lives. If IoT devices aren’t secure, it will compromise not only our privacy but also our security and safety. As such, I predict that in 2022, we’ll see a rise in security measures and protocols to ensure that all connected IoT devices are designed with security top of mind. Initiatives around security such as PSA will gain momentum. Security will become a “built in” feature for smart home products instead of being a “bolted on” addition. At Renesas, we are committed to building products that are designed from scratch while keeping security in mind.
Go to the next page for Vicor predictions.
High Density Power is Needed to Keep Pace with Projected 20X Growth in New Space
Rob Russell, Vice President, Aerospace and Defense, Vicor Corporation
Satellite manufacturers competing in the “New Space” arena are tasked with providing solutions that will enable a 20X increase in internet bandwidth over the next 10 years. The challenges to designing, developing and launching satellites to meet this demand are enormous. One major hurdle is the dueling requirements for shrinking satellite size while concurrently improving throughput. One of the most difficult problems to solve is powering advanced, high-current communications ASICs. To achieve this leap in throughput demand, satellite power designers must deliver 20X-30X more current to the load than legacy systems can provide, while simultaneously reducing the size, weight and cost of the power deliver network (PDN). These requirements will forever be at odds and will continue to escalate in the foreseeable future.
Innovations in power can help LEO and MEO satellites keep pace with their expected 20x growth in New Space. Vicor’s radiation tolerant power modules are five times more power dense than today’s standards products and can reduce power losses by 50 percent.
Vastly improved power density helps solve this problem for New Space low-earth-orbit (LEO) and mid-earth-orbit (MEO) satellites in the form of power modules that deliver high current for today’s AI-driven computing environments. Combined with demonstrated radiation tolerance, they are a perfect fit for the critical needs for the burgeoning LEO and MEO satellite market.
With a 100 to 0.8 V solution that is five times more power dense than the next best competitor, and an efficiency that provides up to a 50 percent reduction in power losses, this new generation of PDNs provides unparalleled capability for developers of satellite communication systems who need to reduce size, weight and cost to meet stringent mission requirements.
Go to the next page for Movandi's 5G Outlook.
Movandi’s Five Megatrends for 5G mmWave in 2022 and Beyond
It’s been a tumultuous year for 5G as wireless carriers scrambled to deploy their networks at mid-band and increasingly millimeter-wave frequencies, and the trend will undoubtedly accelerate in 2022. So, with this in mind, we are making some projections about what we believe will be the 5G “megatrends” in the coming year. In general, they focus on the virtual certainty that 5G mmWave networks will be more widely deployed, driven in large measure by solutions such as Movandi’s cloud-and-AI-based mesh network technology that eliminates the challenges of line-of-site signal propagation.
Most important, 2022 is the year smart repeaters will take center stage to help accelerate challenging 5G mmWave deployments, by improving both performance and economics for global 5G operators. Here we go:
- New hybrid private networks and managed service offers using both Wi-Fi and 5G millimeter-wave technologies, or “WiFive”, gain momentum as a high-performance, flexible and economic solution for enterprises.
Although it might not appear so at first glance, Wi-Fi and mmWave systems are complementary, and there are big benefits when they are. Wi-Fi is ubiquitous, with an installed base of at least 22 billion devices1, all of which are ultimately connected to Ethernet infrastructure. But Wi-Fi networks must support a large number of distributed access points and the fiber backbone connectivity can be expensive.
Millimeter-wave networks can be used for “wireless fiber” operating in the unlicensed 60 GHz and licensed 24/28/39 GHz spectrum to replace expensive fiber for backhaul while also providing broader coverage in the fronthaul, especially in large buildings, stadiums, and shopping environments. Together, this hybrid “WiFive” approach brings the unique characteristics and massive available bandwidth of millimeter-wave frequencies together with the huge installed base of Wi-Fi devices to allow gigabit speeds and lower latency to be achieved at very low cost. In addition, new managed service providers will emerge with a WiFive Network as a Service model designing, implementing, and operating these hybrid networks.
- Intelligent mmWave repeater-based mesh networks leapfrog current approaches making broad deployment cost-effective for the first time.
The conventional approach for deploying mmWave technology relies on placing gNBs or small cells globally will be least $400 billion by 20302, which is obviously not cost-effective. Movandi’s approach turns this paradigm on its head by reinventing the network architecture, dramatically reducing the number of gNBs, small cells, and optical fiber required to serve customers indoors and outdoors. In a white paper3, the highly respected analyst firm Mobile Experts estimates that smart repeaters will cut deployment costs and time in half. Reza Rofougaran, Movandi CTO and co-founder with over 1,000 RF patents, suggests there will be a ratio of between 4:1 to 10:1 smart repeaters to gNB/small cells depending on the application and coverage requirements. As a result, we expect this repeater-based mesh approach to become the standard way that millimeter-wave frequencies are utilized, with the first large commercial deployments in 2022.
- AI, ML and cloud-based orchestration for dynamic real-time optimization will become essential enablers for 5G mmWave networks and C-V2X mobility.
Millimeter-wave network performance, reliability, and economics can be optimized with real-time cloud and AI-controlled mesh networking. Traffic is dynamically routed based on changing usage patterns and rapidly varying signal conditions. Machine learning assesses environmental conditions with continuous updates for things such as a moving van, new building or foliage growth and predicts the best coverage models and for moving vehicles, and the best gNB signals and beams. In addition, automated signal search and detection allows installation locations to be optimized while dramatically reducing the time and cost for deployment because they are comparatively simple to construct in a “plug-and-play” fashion, eliminating the need for technicians and installers to have a high level of expertise.
- 6G network foundation will rely on the new 5G repeater network innovations.
While 5G is arguably the most wide-ranging 3GPP innovation since the inception of cellular technology, 6G presents even more daunting MmWave challenges that have only recently begun to be addressed. However, solutions such as the Movandi smart repeater have already solved the problems associated with millimeter-wave coverage, economics and operation. As they become widely deployed throughout this decade, they will provide an infrastructure foundation and valuable insight for the migration to 6G networks that will operate at frequencies greater than 100 GHz, where no wireless communications systems have operated before.
- 5G Repeater as a Service (RaaS) will transform operator investment strategies and accelerate network deployment.
The modular 5RaaS model will enable service providers to select only the services they need and increase deployment speed by reducing up-front capital investment and the cost of keeping technology and cloud AI software up to date. It will include intelligent repeater hardware, chipsets, highly advanced antenna technology and cloud AI software services, which are constantly being enhanced and updated as environmental conditions change. New open APIs will provide the flexibility to allow developers to create services that can be packaged as complete solutions tailored to allow customers to select only the services they need. It will be essential in the coming year for standards bodies to allow these services to proliferate unencumbered by restrictions posed by proprietary hardware and software.
Now that we’ve made our projections, only time will tell how accurate they are, so at this time next year we will take a look back at how close we were to the mark.
1. “Number of wireless local area network (WLAN) connected devices worldwide from 2016 to 2021”, Statista, https://www.statista.com/statistics/802706/world-wlan-connected-device/
2. Connected world: An evolution in connectivity beyond the 5G revolution”, page v, McKinsey Global Institute, https://www.mckinsey.com/~/media/mckinsey/industries/technology%20media%20and%20telecommunications/telecommunications/our%20insights/connected%20world%20an%20evolution%20in%20connectivity%20beyond%20the%205g%20revolution/mgi_connected-world_discussion-paper_february-2020.ashx
3. “5G mmWave Repeaters Cut Costs in Half,” Mobile Experts,” https://mobile-experts.net/reports/p/white-paper-semiconductors-for-oran-ss6db
Go to the next page for Wilson Electronics predictions.
5G Trends and Predictions
Bruce Lancaster, CEO at Wilson Electronics
- Fixed wireless is the next big thing. Cell phones have historically operated on low-band signal, but as 5G proliferates, 2022 will see a huge rollout of mid-band signal. Carriers have been making major investments in mid-band technology for one particular use case: fixed wireless replacement. The ability to access the internet at your home and/or business through only a wireless connection will be made possible with mid-band technology, and will benefit customers with faster speeds at low costs as carriers scramble to compete on price.
- As 5G booms, and so will the need for additional carrier towers and signal repeaters. Because mid- and high-band signal cannot travel nearly as far as low-band, additional towers and cell signal repeaters will be necessary to propagate that network for both indoor and outdoor spaces. Currently, the U.S. has deployed 387,000 towers. In order to be able to take on mid- and high-band technology while still covering all the same footprint, as many as 6x “nodes” will be needed on the network. Additional cell towers will be built as a result, but many of those nodes will come in the form of signal repeaters.
- The supply chain woes won’t go away any time soon. As CEO of a mid-sized company dealing first-hand with supply chain issues, inflation is a major driver. We’ve seen costs skyrocket on labor rates, container shipping, and manufacturing parts. As a result of wage pressures and high demand for shipping, inflation will continue to rise and supply chains will struggle through the first 2-3 quarters of 2022.
- The future of e-commerce is your phone. The COVID-19 pandemic pushed paper money into the background for most transactions, and reliance on mobile payments is becoming ubiquitous. People will also rely on their phones to take advantage of in-store AR capabilities, compare product prices while in-store and pick up products bought online using mobile barcodes.
Go to the next page for technology predictions from SEMPRE.
Is 2022 the Year America’s Technology Supremacy Ends?
Robert Spalding, US Air Force Brigadier General (ret), founder and CEO of SEMPRE
In an age when American national sovereignty depends more than ever on our ability to access and manage secure, interconnected data, the newly passed $1 trillion US infrastructure bill is the latest failure to invest in our technology future.
This comes at precisely the time when China is exerting its influence as an authoritarian regime to modernize its military and civilian communications infrastructure through the deployment of 5G technology and artificial intelligence (AI). In the race to data dominance, China is leagues ahead of the United States – aided and abetted by Silicon Valley tech companies with little incentive to protect
the rights of Americans to data access and privacy.
This imbalance leaves the US in an increasingly vulnerable position as the government’s failure to focus on technology resilience hands China a global leadership advantage. Unless things change, here are four insights into what 2022 could mean for America’s critical digital infrastructure:
- China extends its technology lead: Weak US investment in AI R&D and a world class 5G cellular broadband infrastructure means China will pull at least a decade ahead of the US technologically.
- US cyber-attacks will continue to rage: US technology lag will further embolden bad actors, which targeted nearly 1,100 organizations with ransomware attacks in the first half of 2021. That’s roughly twice the number during the same period in 2020, according to security analytics software developer, Cognyte. The US is by far the most targeted country, with 54.9 percent of
- US cyber recovery funding will be overwhelmed: The US government has set aside only $20 million per year over the next five years for cybercrime recovery. According to the Council of Economic Advisers, cybercrimes cost the US alone $50 billion to $100 billion – and that was in 2016. The infrastructure bill also allocates $100 million over five years to beef up the nation’s cyber resiliency. This paltry sum is a drop in the ocean compared to the annual costs incurred by corporations to gird their digital infrastructure.
- Data protection will be deprioritized for low-income, rural Americans: The country’s most vulnerable and least tech-savvy citizens will be among those most exposed to online scams, identity theft and cyber hijacking. The $42.5 billion State Broadband Deployment Grant Program
includes only $1 billion for so-called middle-mile infrastructure and leaves too much power in the hands of wireless service providers that have shown scant interest in facilitating data equity.
With these potential outcomes in mind, it’s time for America’s political leaders, telecommunications service providers and data center operators to wake up to the need for a secure, equitable infrastructure that benefits from the speed, interconnectedness and intelligence of AI and 5G technology without succumbing to their susceptibilities.
This begins with the recognition that most telecommunications and data center security software is applied as an afterthought – as a patch to the outside of the network. A better approach is to provide security from the inside, starting at the data layer, to ensure trust is maintained throughout the data value chain. That can be achieved by combining our communications networks and data centers into a single, hardened piece of infrastructure. This has at least three advantages over today’s disaggregated equipment configuration:
- The close physical proximity of a conjoined radio tower and data center server dramatically simplifies the job of physically protecting it – even from a high-altitude nuclear detonation in the form of an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack.
- Data can be encrypted at the source, providing a barrier to backdoor exploitation and man-in-the-middle vulnerabilities through which unsecured data can be siphoned off or manipulated.
- Latency and backhaul costs are reduced by eliminating the need to ship data across the country to and from data centers run by people who, ultimately, are not responsible for ensuring data security and integrity.
In the end, we have a secure, local compute environment where a chain of trust protects data from external threats. The hybrid model gives the global telecommunications and data industry an intelligent firewall that encrypts data traffic, monitors endpoints for anomalous behavior, detects and profiles known good behavior and creates a barricade to future attacks – in real-time, not after the fact.
The onslaught of cybercrimes perpetrated by state actors in Russia and China threatens our personal privacy rights, national sovereignty and democratic principles like never before. We must safeguard our ability to access and manage secure data and apply the same diligence in protecting our national digital infrastructure as we do our nuclear defenses. In the words of President Biden, we need to build back better. To me, that means build back secure.
Go to the next page for trends for 2030 from Ericsson.
Ericsson reports the 10 Hot Consumer Trends 2030 – The Everyspace Plaza are:
1. The All-Now Arena
You could be both actor and spectator, but will the immersion experience give you a thrill or a fright? Nearly eight out of 10 consumers envisage event halls where telepresence technology allows artists to digitally perform as if they were there in person.
2. The Immersive Beauty Salon
Skipping the knife and needle is an attractive beauty option for many. Beauty salons that use volumetric modelling technology to digitally enhance looks are expected in malls by seven out of 10 consumers.
3. The Meta Tailor
Fast fashion tailored just for you – and your avatar. More than seven out of 10 AR/VR users foresee a tailor in the mall using fabrics that can switch to become waterproof or provide ventilation when needed.
4. The Anyverse Pool
Many imagine the exploration of impossible worlds. Two-thirds of consumers believe there will be swimming pools where you can use an oxygenated VR headset to experience outer space in zero gravity.
5. The Hybrid Gym
For many, physical vigor and mental health are inextricably linked. Seven out of ten consumers expect mental fitness centers that have multisensory, personality-tailored AR/VR scenery to help improve mental health.
6. The Print-a-Wish Multifactory
On-demand repair and production are the future. Over half of consumers want to shop sustainably in a factory outlet that recycles their old products.
7. The Restaurant at the Node of the Universe
Distraction-free, virtual company is preferable for many. Half of consumers want to visit restaurants to virtually eat with friends in other restaurants, anywhere in the world.
8. The Neverending Store
Try before you buy – virtually, at least. Three-quarters of consumers expect to be able to project their home inside the store when trying out new products.
9. The Medical Multiplex Center
We’re used to everything being instant. Why wait when it comes to health? Seventy-seven percent of consumers foresee in-mall medical centers with drop-in AI health scanning that gives near-instant health status updates.
10. The Nature+ Park
For those stuck in cities, nature may be what’s missing. Forty-two percent of consumers want to visit an in-mall park where they can feel closer to nature through digital and programmable materials that provide hybrid experiences.
Read the Ericsson ConsumerLab Ten Hot Consumer Trends 2030 – the Everyspace Plaza report.
Keysight 2022 Predictions
Technology Predictions from an Electronic Design and Test Thinktank
In 2021, the world continued to experience an unprecedented public health crisis – the coronavirus pandemic. This has impacted all sectors of society and forced enterprises, small businesses, governments and private institutions to pivot, in some cases extensively, to accelerate digital transformations and rethink the way innovation is achieved.
Keysight executives comment on the shape-shifting business operations and technology trends that are unfolding through the lens of the pandemic, the effects of which will continue to have lasting effects on organizations and society.
The rise of quantum computing
Quantum is an emerging technology that has continued to thrive during COVID from an innovation and investment perspective. 2022 will be a breakout year for quantum. The need for high precision test and measurement will rapidly expand to enable superconducting quantum systems to realize their full potential.
- Multiple 100 qubit quantum computers come to the cloud
In 2022 several companies will release quantum processor units (QPUs) to the cloud with 100 or more qubits. These breakthroughs will create new challenges for device developers, including scaling (bigger quantum computers), deploying (more calibrations) and the repeatability (yield in device fabrication) of quantum devices.
- Breakthroughs in two qubit gate error rates
Two qubit gate error rates are currently a major limiting factor in quantum algorithm performance in finance, pharma and logistics applications. With QPU technologies now demonstrating improvements in two qubit gate error rates, there will be record lows in system noise in 2022 helping improve the performance of quantum processers. These advancements create a new challenge to measure small gate error rates and understand QPU crosstalk reliably and efficiently.
Resilient supply chains
Current supply chain disruptions (shortages of semiconductor chips and raw materials, coupled with logistics constraints like crowded ports and a shortage of truck drivers) have created bottlenecks that will continue to constrain output in 2022. Supply chain resilience is now key to an organization's ability to navigate the ongoing volatility. Organizations will increasingly divert efforts to future-proof supply chains to gain a competitive advantage. In addition, sustainable supply chains will be prioritized to mitigate the environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) risk.
- Supply chains will become more agile and digitized
Digital technologies will build new capabilities into the supply chain ecosystem. With greater automation and visibility, organizations will be more nimble and able to respond to fluctuations quickly.
- The self-driving supply chain will become a reality
As cognitive automation is widely embedded, supply chains will become more intelligent. This will lead to the automation making recommendations, predicting outcomes and eventually making decisions autonomously.
- Business continuity planning and risk mitigation
Rather than relying on one global provider, there will be a shift to multiple sourcing and regionalization to reduce disruption. This will be a vital determinant of supply chain resilience.
- Design for resilience
Product design will incorporate easier to source standardized parts, allowing organizations to respond quickly to disruptions. Maintaining safety stocks for critical components will replace the established “just in time” approach to inventory.
Virtual collaboration will become more sophisticated
The pandemic has shown organizations that they can be successful with a disparate workforce. In 2022, virtual collaboration will become more sophisticated, with organizations utilizing innovative technology to boost productivity. This new wave of remote collaboration will create a complex web of connected systems in which test and measurement will be essential to ensure a seamless and secure experience.
- Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality/Mixed Reality (VR/AR/MR) technologies will support better visualization. In product design, digital twins will create simulations of designs before building the physical product. These simulations allow remote teams to collaborate on the design, improve the overall process and reduce the time and cost required for product development.
- Remote monitoring with automated systems, including robots in warehouses and delivery drones for logistics, will capture and consolidate data that remote workers can share and monitor in real-time.
- Citizen Developers will dominate by 2025
The biggest challenge and opportunity for CIOs is the democratization of IT through citizen development. A citizen developer reports to a business unit or function other than IT. By 2027, there will be five times as many citizen developers as traditional developers in organizations.
- The accelerating pace of digital transformation with every workflow becoming automated, streamlined and interconnected is fueling the insatiable demand for more apps.
- The widespread deployment of intelligent technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP) in no-code and low-code platforms, enables citizen developers to perform automation. As a result of this shift, CIOs will no longer be resource-constrained and can rapidly scale their digital transformation efforts. However, they will need to continuously monitor and test the user experience across the entire ecosystem of apps and services.
- The pivot to citizen developers will add to the security burden as CIOs will need real-time visibility into the network to ensure that citizen developers and users are secure. The rise of citizen developers depends on continuous intelligent test automation, ensuring that everything performs as users expect and that systems are secure.
- In enterprise systems, cloud-first composable architectures will displace monolithic legacy architectures
- IT organizations will accelerate the digitalization of their firms through API-based integration of cloud-based solutions from a variety of vendors to achieve unprecedented levels of adaptability, functionality, customer experience, scalability and robustness.
- Each firm will become increasingly dependent on the performance, reliability and security of the networks of its cloud service vendors, solutions providers and business partners.
- Network visibility and network digital twin solutions will need to find new ways to promote the required levels of performance, reliability and most importantly, security, across the networks of multiple sets of firms.
- It’s all about subscription services not devices
Connected devices are ubiquitous across industries; the key now is to deliver subscription services. In 2022, intelligent technologies will allow organizations to treat customers as a segment of one and roll out hyper-personalized services. For example:
- A smart fridge presents menu options for the week based on an individual’s preference (gluten-free) and then automatically suggests shopping lists with the preferred grocery delivery service for any missing ingredients for the meals.
- By 2025, these types of personalized services will have grown rapidly and over 50 percent of households (US) will have a least one subscription.
- Traditional industries will become subscription/usage-based
Rolls-Royce rents out its engines based on usage; trains are leased per mile. As the on-demand economy continues to expand, subscription models will expand into business and consumer markets. This includes cars, kitchen appliances and automated services. The connected infrastructure will advise when repairs or replacements need to happen as predictive maintenance becomes the norm by 2024 to optimize the availability of these services.
- Autonomous vehicles help fuel shift to mobility as a service (MaaS)
The combination of autonomous vehicles and the move to subscription-based services aligns with a world where you no longer need to own a car. By 2025, consumers will shift to a rent-a-service model enabling them to go wherever and whenever they like. Another advantage of autonomous vehicles is that users can optimize their locations to maximize the predicted utilization. This ensures that everyone who wants a car gets one when they need it, using the minimum number of vehicles by analyzing live and historical data to fuel predictive analytics.
- IoT will transform the retail experience
- Before the end of this decade, there will be no checkout or cashiers in any retail store. Intelligent technologies and RFID tags will track every item and auto charge to a customer’s credit card/bank account, removing the friction from the physical shopping experience.
- By 2024, robots will be widely deployed both in-store and in warehouses/fulfillment centers, further shrinking the number of human jobs in the retail industry.
- Supermarkets will be the next victim of the retail apocalypse. As RFID tags become pervasive in the home and in stores, supermarkets will deliver directly from the warehouse to the customer eliminating the need for physical stores.
- Drone delivery will become the norm by 2025 to meet the demands of younger consumers and to help accelerate the delivery of goods.
- Healthcare diagnostics
In the same way IoT started to move analytics to the edge, this is now happening in healthcare. Increasingly sophisticated and accredited, devices (such as the Apple Watch) have technology that allows individual patients to perform a range of diagnostics on their own devices in their own home and in their own time. This trend will expand into new markets, delivering a range of autonomous, preliminary diagnosis solutions in most homes by 2024.
- Supply chain cyber risks will soar
With the increased reliance on technology, cybersecurity risks and vulnerabilities will become a growing concern for supply chains as hackers have turned their attention to the IIoT and other critical infrastructure targets, including supply chains. Designing a resilient supply chain will require connecting the entire ecosystem and ensuring that unrelenting attacks from hackers are not successful.
- By 2025, SecOps will be the number one operational priority
- With security breaches a growing threat to every industry, DevOps will finally be superseded by DevSecOps in 2022 as businesses realize that security must take center stage in a hyper-connected digital world.
- Information technology security and operations teams will collaborate and integrate tools, processes and technology to keep organizations secure. Security auditing and self-directed attacks will be the only viable way to mitigate risk.
- Standards will be introduced to help secure connected systems
- Every single connected device presents another attack vector for hackers to exploit. With the complexity of connected systems, organizations haven’t had visibility into where the problems occur. By the end of 2023, standards will emerge that provide a single, secured interface to IoT systems to narrow the attack surface and provide better visibility into attempted and successful breaches.
- New security tactics will be essential in an increasingly connected world where trust and security are paramount. Identifying gaps in coverage and remediating vulnerabilities before attackers can exploit them will be a competitive advantage for every organization.
Digital transformation and connectivity
- There will be an insatiable demand for bandwidth
Demand for bandwidth continues to grow unabated, and it’s rising like a digital tidal wave. In today’s world, more devices are transmitting and receiving richer content: high-resolution images; 4K and 8K video; dynamic, interactive experiences like multi-player gaming; and telemedicine.
- Meeting customer expectation for next-generation wireless devices will require breakthrough innovations to deliver significantly reduced size, weight, power and cost (SWaP-C)
The insatiable appetite for bandwidth and reliability has resulted in an explosion of complexity in the wireless infrastructure – both in the fixed plant and user equipment (UE). New RF bands, advanced modulation formats and techniques contribute to the rise in complexity. Nevertheless, consumers are unwilling to accept increases in cost or size of UE and demand even greater battery life. Achieving the necessary SWaP-C reductions requires a multi-faceted approach, including advanced packaging technologies capable of interconnecting hundreds of mmWave components while extracting unwanted heat, as well as breakthrough approaches in microcircuit fabrication.
- 5G will supercharge digital transformation across multiple industries
- Through the end of this decade, the pace of transformation will continue to accelerate. In 2022, the wide-scale rollout of 5G will supercharge the speed of change with the removal of bandwidth constraints. Deployments, device certifications and network rollouts will continue to scale, and as open radio access networks (O-RAN) mature, 5G deployments at scale will follow.
- 5G devices will be everywhere in 2022. The focus will be on new industrial IoT devices with improved latency and reliability. 5G coverage in rural locations will remain limited, and 5G assisted autonomous cars (level 4) will not come to fruition in 2022.
- Ongoing investment in 3GPP’s releases 16 and17, and beyond, will focus on new capabilities such as reducing latency, improving reliability and positioning, which will facilitate new use cases in vehicular, industrial networks and factory automation.
- 5G will enable the next stage of ubiquitous computing by distributing intelligence where it is needed and improving efficiencies of every process through better control and reduction of waste.
- 6G: More is happening than you think:
- By 2028, 5G networks will be pervasive, realizing the original vision of 5G by enabling vertical industries well beyond what we think of as “mobile communications”: like Industrial IoT, digitized healthcare, smart-cities and extended reality (XR) applications that currently are just concepts. The first commercial 6G networks will go live in that same year, paving the way for the convergence of the physical, digital and human worlds through applications, computing and communications. This will finally create the internet of everything (IoE).
- The launch of 6G in 2028 will be enabled by research already underway. And will see increased investment in 2022 from academia, government and industry. This research will outline how to make the vision around 6G a reality. 6G will make mobile communications a more fundamental part of our professional and personal lives.
- Digital twin adoption will forever change how we design, build and deliver products
- As organizations strive to advance digital transformation, they will recognize the limitations of virtual systems and increasingly adopt digital twins. For example, in emerging industries like autonomous vehicles, manufacturers have no room for error, and with a digital twin, they can simulate every permutation and continuously refine the design.
- Digital twins present a new way to approach design and simulation that is more efficient, practical, and meets the growing regulatory burden. Unlike a virtual model, digital twin updates in real-time with performance, maintenance, and health data from the physical systems, improving decision-making. To keep up with the pace of digital transformation, digital twins will become an essential part of product design.
- Artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and cloudification technologies will increasingly enable future networks
- This will include core network transformation and improved mobility, as well as and new software technologies that will increasingly enable telecommunications, including O-RAN, 5G core network and mmWave mobility.
- Artificial Intelligence will also continue to transform testing, analytics and automation
- AI/ML is at the heart of automation, not just in running the tests, but in how we use the data to make informed decisions. It is far more efficient to move the algorithm to the data rather than move terabytes of data into the cloud, so we expect to see some advances that will help gain insight faster on data in movement.
- With the increasing complexity of a digital-first world, testing code alone is not working. In 2022, code compliance will no longer determine if software can be released. This is especially true of the increasing number of systems that use “AI” technology and not all responses are deterministic, requiring “AI to test AI”. Intelligent test automation will be vital to ensure that our complex connected world performs exactly as needed.
Sustainability & ESG will remain a key focus
- Supply chains will embrace sustainability
As organizations look to mitigate their ESG risk, they will prioritize sustainable supply chains. The sustainable supply chain will incorporate:
- Reducing the carbon footprint in shipment and logistics planning and having carbon accounting platforms across systems to monitor emissions data.
- Creating a circular supply chain (reduce, reuse, recycle and remanufacture) to minimize waste that impacts the environment and to reduce the cost of raw materials.
- Supply chain integrity. Ethics and compliance will be increasingly important, spanning fair and legal labor practices through to responsible sourcing.
- Climate-smart supply chain. This will evaluate how environmental changes affect the availability of materials and identify potential disruptions to the supply chain.
- Creating sustainable supply chains requires comprehensive testing and verification to minimize the carbon footprint.
- Sustainability ratings for the home
- With homes now overloaded with connected devices, this is impacting sustainability efforts. By 2025, home energy ratings will factor in the smart ecosystem and grade the efficiency of connected devices in the home. This rating will become a vital selling/renting feature, particularly for Millennials and Gen Z.
- As everything is digitized, it creates a complex web of systems services and apps that require rigorous automated testing to ensure everything not only performs as expected but minimizes the environmental impact.
- The push towards net zero will need to expand
The push to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 will require a wave of new technologies to be deployed. However, this fails to tackle the existing carbon in the atmosphere. To redress the balance, there will need to be a form of carbon sequestration or capture on an industrial scale before the end of the decade.