Towards a taxonomy of differentiated service classes in the 5G era

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The physics and economics of cellular networks often means that there is a need to treat some services differently. This reality has spawned several technical mechanisms in the industry (e.g. DiffServ, QCI) and lured policymakers to promulgate, sometimes, unclear service classes (e.g. FCC's non-BIAS in the US). Yet, in the face of Net Neutrality expectations, this mixture of technical and policy toolkit has had little commercial impact, with no clear roadmap on how cellular operators should differentiate between services. Worse, the lack of clarity has disincentivised innovations that would increase the utilisation of the network or improve its operational efficiency. It has also discouraged the introduction of more customer choice on how to manage the priority of their own services. As policymakers begin the process of crafting the rules that will guide the 5G era, our contribution in this position paper is to bring better clarity on the nature and treatment of differentiated services in the industry. We introduce a clarifying framework of seven differentiated service classes (statutory, critical, best effort, commercially-preferred, discounted, delayed and blocked). Our framework is designed to shape discussions, provide guidance to stakeholders and inform policymaking on how to define, design, implement and enforce differentiated service classes in the 5G era.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIEEE 5G World Forum, 5GWF 2018 - Conference Proceedings
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781538649824
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2018
Event1st IEEE 5G World Forum, 5GWF 2018 - Santa Clara, United States
Duration: 9 Jul 201811 Jul 2018


Conference1st IEEE 5G World Forum, 5GWF 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySanta Clara


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