TCA Maintains 5G Momentum with Enhanced ‘Recommended 5G SIM’

Following sustained growth across the 5G ecosystem, TCA’s latest ‘Recommended 5G’ will help mobile operators maximise investment in core infrastructure that enhances security and unlocks value-added services across new use cases.    

15 December 2022Trusted Connectivity Alliance (TCA) has updated its ‘Recommended 5G SIM’ technical definition to align with the latest features and use cases introduced by 3GPP’s Release 17.

With the 5G SIM / eSIM already promoting the highest levels of security, privacy and functionality in 5G networks, TCA’s ‘Recommended 5G SIM’ offers operators a way to safely unlock the full suite of advanced 5G services from the very start of their migration plans. It achieves this by outlining the optimal features of SIM technology that address the core security challenges operators face beyond network access to support seamless 5G migration. The importance of the 5G SIM / eSIM in the 5G ecosystem is reflected by TCA’s member market data, which has demonstrated significant and sustained growth in 5G SIM shipments.

Building on the success of 5G Phase 2 (3GPP Release 16), the latest updates align with new features and enhancements introduced by 3GPP Release 17. These reflect the growing relevance of 5G by expanding its market reach across emerging use cases. New features, enhancements and value-added services from Release 17 include:

  • Supporting satellite telecoms for non-terrestrial connectivity.
  • Unlocking mobile broadband and private 5G networks for homes and businesses.
  • An expanded New-Radio SideLink for growing IoT-use cases in the automotive industry.
  • Ultra-reliable low latency services and RedCap (NR-Lite) for growing IoT, eHealth, public safety and mission-critical use cases.
  • Improved roaming services for an enhanced, cost-effective subscriber experience.

The latest release also supports operators to upgrade not just the Radio Access Network (RAN) portion of their infrastructure, but instead upgrade their networks for a full, standalone 5G service offering. 

“TCA’s ongoing work to enhance the Recommended 5G SIM technical definition is enabling operators, vendors and the wider IoT ecosystem to unlock further benefits from 5G deployments,” comments Claus Dietze, Chair of the TCA Board. “As 5G use cases continue to expand, a key priority is promoting trust and confidence across the ecosystem through advanced security and robust privacy protections. The Recommended 5G SIM advocated by TCA delivers on these requirements, putting operators on the front foot to address emerging challenges and increasing complexity.”

The SIM / eSIM is the only authoritative platform which can be used to secure 5G network access according to 3GPP – the 5G standardisation body.

‘TCA Recommended 5G SIM: A Definition’ is available for free download on the TCA website. The guidance provided in the technical document relates to both 5G Phase 1 (3GPP Release 15), 5G Phase 2 (3GPP Release 16) and 3PP Release 17. The TCA Recommended 5G SIM is fully backwards compatible. 

TCA has also published a recording of its latest webinar – ‘Recommended 5G SIM: Unlocking the Benefits of 3GPP Release 17’ –  to provide interested parties with more detailed insight into the new features introduced.