A variegated look at 5G in the wild: performance, power, and QoE implications [conference paper]


ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communication (SIGCOMM) Conference - August 23-27, 2021


Arvind Narayanan (Ph.D. student), Xumiao Zhang, Ruiyang Zhu, Ahmad Hassan (Ph.D. student), Shuowei Jin, Xiao Zhu, Xiaoxuan Zhang (undergraduate research assistant), Denis Rybkin (undergraduate research assistant), Zhengxuan Yang (undergraduate research assistant), Zhuoqing Morley Mao, Feng Qian(associate professor), Zhi-Li Zhang (professor)


Motivated by the rapid deployment of 5G, we carry out an in-depth measurement study of the performance, power consumption, and application quality-of-experience (QoE) of commercial 5G networks in the wild. We examine different 5G carriers, deployment schemes (Non-Standalone, NSA vs. Standalone, SA), radio bands (mmWave and sub 6-GHz), protocol configurations (_e.g._ Radio Resource Control state transitions), mobility patterns (stationary, walking, driving), client devices (_i.e._ User Equipment), and upper-layer applications (file download, video streaming, and web browsing). Our findings reveal key characteristics of commercial 5G in terms of throughput, latency, handover behaviors, radio state transitions, and radio power consumption under the above diverse scenarios, with detailed comparisons to 4G/LTE networks. Furthermore, our study provides key insights into how upper-layer applications should best utilize 5G by balancing the critical tradeoff between performance and energy consumption, as well as by taking into account the availability of both network and computation resources. We have released the datasets and tools of our study at https://github.com/SIGCOMM21-5G/artifact.

Link to full paper

A variegated look at 5G in the wild: performance, power, and QoE implications


mobile networking, 5G