Telstra, Intel and Ericsson, today unveiled one of the world’s first esports professional gaming experiences over 5G, showcasing the power of 5G’s ultra-low latency that professional and amateur gamers alike can expect in the future.
Fresh from Intel Extreme Masters Sydney, pro esports team The Chiefs helped demonstrate the technical capabilities of 5G at Telstra’s 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast through ultra-low latency of around five to six milliseconds, which is around four times lower than the average latency of 4G today. The Chiefs were one of the first esports teams in the world to experience gaming over 5G, which was streamed live to other gamers around the world on Twitch.
Telstra’s Executive Director Network and Infrastructure Engineering, Channa Seneviratne said Telstra, Intel, and Ericsson used the mmWave wireless connectivity inside Telstra’s 5G Innovation Centre on the Gold Coast to power the demonstration, enabled through Ericsson’s 5G base station and core network. Intel provided its Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform, which allows for quick implementation of the latest air interfaces and communication protocols.
“Esports is the fastest growing spectator sport in the world and this gaming experience is a real life example of how 5G might be used in future,” said Mr Seneviratne.
“Latency is the time it takes for data to be sent between two points, so it is crucial in the world of gaming when milliseconds can literally mean the difference between winning and losing. Esports demonstrates how that is possible over 5G, a benefit of the new technology that will underpin a host of use cases, including autonomous cars, drones and remote control of machinery“, said Mr Seneviratne.
“5G will enable on-demand entertainment anywhere, making it more vibrant and immersive, and esports is a prime example of a use case that gets significantly better with faster speeds, ultra-low latency, and massive capacity,” said Jonathan Wood, Intel’s Senior Director 5G Market Development and Partnerships within Intel’s Next Generation and Standards group. “This 5G esports demonstration is just the beginning of Intel’s commitment to transform the gaming ecosystem with end-to-end technology solutions with our partners.”
Ericsson’s Managing Director Australia and New Zealand, Emilio Romeo, said “We’ve partnered with Telstra and Intel to deliver esports professionals an unrivalled gaming experience with 5G, allowing them to play in a mobile setting while having the low latency they can only get today from a wireline network. This demonstration is another example of how 5G’s low latency and high throughput can be used across various industries, providing greater efficiency and mobility.”
Members of the public were also able to participate in this world first experience, with esports games set up at Anzac Park on the Gold Coast. They were joined by Tom Lynch from the Gold Coast Suns and esports host Stephanie ‘Hex’ Bendixsen.
“Telstra is continuing to test next generation mobile technologies in Australian conditions to support the early commercial deployment of 5G mobile services in Australia. 5G has the potential to change the way we live and work, and today’s 5G gaming demonstration shows it will unleash a host of new opportunities,” said Mr Seneviratne.
TECHNICAL FACT SHEET
Intel, Telstra and Ericsson, used the mmWave connectivity inside its 5G Innovation Centre and pavilion on the Gold Coast to power the demonstrations, using the Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform, Ericsson’s 5G base station and core network and Dell Alienware PCs.
The Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform is a development platform that was designed to enable rapid prototyping across a variety of use cases. The platform provides a high level of flexibility and processing power for the early development and testing of 5G technology. It is comprised of three critical subsystems:
1. A powerful baseband signal processor powered by five next-generation Intel® Arria®10 FPGAs. This technology enables us to quickly update the 5G trial platform’s Layer 1 baseband signal processing, as well as Layer 2 MAC processing. The use of Intel FPGAs on the trial platform means that the platform can be reprogrammed according to the different use cases for 5G.
2. An advanced radio frequency unit supporting operation in both sub-6GHz such as 3.5GHz and mmWave spectrum bands including 28GHz and 39GHz.
3. A communications protocol stack based on the Intel® Core™ i7 processor.
Innovations in the network such as edge computing and network slicing will revolutionize the entertainment experience by delivering streaming[media through a more efficient architecture and by extending the cloud to the edge of the network where it’s closer to the user—reducing overall network congestion while offering a better experience.
The demonstration uses Ericsson’s advanced 5G test environment which implements and validates the technologies being standardised through 3GPP to implement 5G. The equipment uses mmWave frequencies which opens up significantly more spectrum for operators which will in turn provide users with greater throughputs (capacity) for tomorrows advanced applications.
The 5G system combines the advantages of high throughput, low latency with mobility so that users requiring high performance, such as professional gamers, get a wireline-like experience when on the move.
Dell & Alienware
The tournament was played on Alienware laptops and PC units. The PC set up included the Alienware Aurora R7 (with Intel Core i7-8700) and Alienware 25” Gaming Monitor, Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard and Alienware Elite Gaming Mouse. The laptops were the Alienware 13, 15 and 17 (all with Intel Core i7-7700HQ processors), and Alienware 17 GTX 1080 (with Intel Core i7-7820HK processors) with Alienware Elite Gaming Mouse.
Dell’s new research into the State of Gaming revealed the profile of the “gamer” has changed as the world of esports goes mainstream. Australia’s gamers are proud, friendly and in it for the fun. Gamers also believe their gaming has helped them develop skills such as strategic thinking, improved hand-eye coordination and increased reaction time.