This section discusses topics related to the overall 5G architecture and its impact on (i) Mobile
Networks, (ii) Physical Networking and Computing Facilities, (iii) Service & Infrastructure
Management and Orchestration and (iv) Hosting and Deployment Systems.
5G networks are conceived as extremely flexible and highly programmable E2E connect-andcompute
infrastructures that are application- and service-aware, as well as time-, location- and
context-aware. They represent:

an evolution in terms of capacity, performance and spectrum access in radio network
segments; and
an evolution of native flexibility and programmability conversion in all non-radio 5G
network segments: Fronthaul and Backhaul Networks, Access Networks, Aggregation
Networks, Core Networks, Mobile Edge Networks, Software Networks, SoftwareDefined
Cloud Networks, Satellite Networks and IoT Networks.

5G Architecture enables new business opportunities meeting the requirements of large variety of
use cases as well as enables 5G to be future proof by means of (i) implementing network slicing
in cost efficient way, (ii) addressing both end user and operational services, (iii) supporting
softwarization natively, (iv) integrating communication and computation and (v) integrating
heterogeneous technologies (incl. fixed and wireless technologies)

These qualities give 5G networks a number of advantages. One is a high degree of flexibility.
They serve highly diverse types of communication – for example, between humans, machines,
devices and sensors - with different performance attributes. They also enforce the necessary
degree of flexibility, where and when needed, with regard to capability, capacity, security,
elasticity and adaptability.

5G networks represent a shift in networking paradigms: a transition from today’s “network of
entities” to a “network of (virtual) functions”. Indeed, this “network of (virtual) functions”,
resulting, in some cases, in the decomposition of current monolithic network entities will
constitute the unit of networking for next generation systems. These functions should be able to
be composed on an “on-demand”, “on-the-fly” basis. In fact, a research challenge consists in
designing solutions which identify a set of elementary functions or blocks to compose network
functions, while today they implemented as monolithic

Further advantages emerge in the areas of management, control of systems and resources. 5G
networks enable the uniform management and control operations that are becoming part of the
dynamic design of software architectures. They can host service executions in one or more
slices.