Samsung combines 5G, AI, drones and cloud in conspiracy ... to ease network maintenance costs

To save telco workers from climbing the greasy pole as networks get denser

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The current febrile information climate might not be the best time to combine AI, 5G, cloud and drones, but Samsung has done it because the company is conspiring to ease network management chores.

Today, the company says, a trip to check that antennae configuration atop a cell tower can take hours. And some poor sod has to go up and down a greasy pole to do the job, which puts them in danger.

Samsung would rather send in the drones and this week demonstrated a smartphone-controlled craft that used cameras to photograph antennae. The resulting happy snaps were sent to the cloud where they were analysed using AI to measure the rotation and tilt of the cameras. Those measurements were compared to the desired angles, so that network operators can check that their kit is in the best position to operate optimally.

The process took 15 minutes from takeoff to verification, a rather faster process than is possible with humans climbing ladders.

Seeing as 5G networks require a great many cell sites, Samsung thinks for maintenance-cost-conscious telcos will open their chequebooks with alacrity. The company will therefore productise this conspiracy-launching combo by year’s end. ®

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