5G-Advanced with Marcin Dryjanski


5G-Advanced, 3GPP standardization phases and naming

With the recent update from 3GPP [1] the new brand name and the logo have been introduced for the Release-18 (Rel-18) of mobile communications standards, namely 5G-Advanced. The work package for this standard release is still to be approved (the prioritization process on Rel-18 features should be completed by the end of 2021 [2]), but this update shall reflect a significant feature update versus 5G. The preliminary proposals for Rel-18 are split into the three groups as follows: eMBB-driven Functional Evolution, Non-eMBB-driven Functional Evolution, Cross-Functionalities for both eMBB and Non-eMBB Evolution.

Looking backwards, we’ve been to similar transitions within the LTE era, where the first version of the system back in Rel-8 was named LTE, and the updated version with extended set of features to fulfill the ITU requirements for a 4G system was called LTE-Advanced within Rel-10. Later, a transition point was set to Rel-13 standard update with the name LTE-Advanced Pro.

Summarizing, every 2-3 3GPP releases (which is a 3–5-year timeframe) a significant standard update is marked by the updated naming:

  • LTE was used for 3GPP Rel-8 and Rel-9
  • LTE-Advanced was used within Rel-10 (compliant with ITU-R 4G definition under the name of IMT-Advanced), Rel-11, Rel-12
  • LTE-Advanced Pro was the name used within Rel-13 and Rel-14
  • 5G is used for Rel-15 (5G Phase I), Rel-16 (5G Phase II compliant to ITU-R 5G definition under the name of IMT-2020) and Rel-17 (5G improvements)
  • From Rel-18 onwards the name of the mobile system defined by 3GPP will be 5G-Advanced


[1] Evolution towards 5G-Advanced (3gpp.org)

[2] Release 18 (3gpp.org)


Marcin is the author of From LTE to LTE-Advanced Pro and 5G. For more information or to buy, click here

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