Journal article Open Access

Smart Contracts in the 5G Roaming Architecture: The Fusion of Blockchain with 5G Networks

Babak Mafakheri (University of Bologna); Andreas Heider-Aviet (T-Systems); Roberto Riggio (i2CAT, RISE); Leonardo Goratti (Safran Passenger Innovations GmbH)

The rollout of fifth generation (5G) cellular network technology has generated a new surge of interest in the potential of blockchain to automate various use cases involving cellular networks. 5G is indeed expected to offer new market opportunities for small and large enterprises alike. In this article, we introduce a new roaming network architecture for 5G based on a permissioned blockchain platform with smart contracts. The proposed solution improves the visibility for mobile network operators of their subscribers' activities in the visited network, as well as enabling quick payment reconciliation and reducing fraudulent transactions. The article further reports on the methodology and architecture of the proposed blockchain-based roaming solution using the Hyperledger platform.

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