Paulraj called for startups to take up the challenges. “5G will be a major change and big companies are not good at innovating, they move slowly so there are opportunities for startups,” he said.
He founded Iospan Wireless Inc., in 1998 to commercialize his work in MIMO. It was acquired by Intel in 2003, and the technology was later used in WiMax, LTE and 802.11m networks.
The 71-year-old entrepreneur said he has no plans to form any companies around massive MIMO for 5G, however, he is advising multiple startups. “There’s a long way to go [in building 5G] and I hope we can create some startups to look into these things,” he said.
Indeed, it’s already happening. At least one startup claims it has a new approach that beats the OFDM modulation used in today’s cellular systems and is expected to be used, in a modified form, for 5G.
Cohere Technologies is the brain child of an associate professor of math at the University of Texas at Austin. The professor (Ronny Hadani) applied some math concepts to wireless that resulted in concepts for using Doppler delay for wireless channel estimation to eliminate fading problems experienced with time and frequency modulation schemes and thus improve spectral efficiency, one of the key goals of 5G.
The startup is now preparing a white paper to give some of the first public details of its concept. Paulraj was not familiar with the startup but said channel estimation is one of the key problems for 5G, calling it “an elephant in the room.”
— Rick Merritt, Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, EE Times