More 5G system enhancements are reaching maturity with the completion of Release 17.
The "Release 17 Description; Summary of Rel-17 Work Items" (TR21.917) is now in production, with the Work Plan manager adding summary notes for each of the Features within. Although the detailed data on each piece of work (Studies, Work item descriptions, Features) is available via the work plan, or via the 3GPP Portal, we hope that the "initial state" (pre-Change Request state) of the Features in TR21.917 will be of use to you.
2022 was the year in which Release 17 was functionally frozen – 3GPP’s first and only release completed remotely in its entirety, via email discussions and online sessions - due to the travel restrictions in place.
Some Release 17 highlights
TSG#95-e (March 2022) saw the completion of the Rel-17 functional freeze.
Some important Rel-17 projects were:
- Sidelink enhancements,
- Reduced capability (Redap) NR devices,
- NR operation extended to 71GHz,
- Further enhancements on MIMO for NR,
- NR over Non terrestrial Networks (NTN),
- IoT over NTN,
- UE power saving enhancements for NR,
- Enhancements to Integrated Access and Backhaul for NR,
- Enhancement of RAN slicing for NR,
- RF requirements enhancement for NR FR1,
- RF requirements for NR FR2,
- Coverage and positioning enhancements,
- NR and slicing QoE,
- Enhanced support of non-public networks,
- Support for uncrewed aerial systems,
- Support for edge computing in 5GC,
- Proximity-based services in 5GS,
- Access traffic steering, switch and splitting (ATSSS),
- Network automation for 5G (Phase 2).
During 2022, Release 18 started its progress - becoming the main focus from June onwards.
Some Background on Release 17
- 3GPP Work Plan review at Plenary #94e (SP-211658)
- Release 17 Update from SA2 - March 2021 - Lists the new Release-17 study items and work items, approved as the focus of further enhancements to the 5G system and enablers for new features and services.
- Evolution towards 5G-Advanced - May 2021 - 'Release 17 on time...'
- Press Release: "Release 17 timeline agreed" - December 14, 2020
- News story on "5G in Release 17 – strong radio evolution" - December 14, 2019
- TR21.917 the "Release description; Release 17", will be approved and published at the end of the Release. Prior to that, draft versions will be available.
Details of the features and work items under each 3GPP Release are contained in the Work plan.