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NewSQL vs NoSQL in the Race to 5G

NewSQL vs NoSQL in the Race to 5G

January 15, 2021

Why NewSQL Beats SQL & NoSQL in the Race to 5G

As today’s leading communication service providers (CSPs) begin to roll out 5G networks and new business support services (BSS), they will need to be able to handle and process more data than ever before while ensuring superior user experiences.

The 5G era promises a number of new monetization opportunities for telco providers, including everything from delivering hyper-personalized offers and preventing fraud to enforcing network policies and billing individual users based on their unique behaviors.

But in today’s age of instant gratification, making this all work without a hitch is only possible with an underlying technology layer that is capable of processing data in real time.

And not just real time the way most providers use it, which typically means somewhere between 50 and 100 milliseconds. To unlock the full promise of 5G, CSPs need to be able to process and make key initial decisions on data rapidly — in under 10 milliseconds.

SQL, NoSQL, and NewSQL: Which is best for 5G?

When it comes to picking a database for your 5G initiatives, you have three options:

  • SQL, which typically refers to the traditional relationship database management systems (RDBMS) designed decades ago that are used to handle structured data (e.g., credit card transactions)
  • NoSQL, a newer kind of database designed for unstructured data at scale (e.g., large social networks and services like Netflix)
  • NewSQL, which combines the functionality of traditional RDBMS solutions, including ACID compliance, while also delivering the scalability and performance that NoSQL databases are known for

In the age of big data, SQL solutions won’t help telcos’ 5G efforts because they lack the speed and flexibility of the two other options, and they’re also incapable of supporting unstructured data (e.g., pictures and video). And while NoSQL is capable of supporting data-driven applications at scale, such solutions only offer eventual consistency. As such, it’s impossible for a telco that uses NoSQL to prevent the same account trying to use the same credit on different devices around the same time, for example.

Comparing NoSQL vs. NewSQL across four categories

In a new eBook, we explore the differences between NoSQL and NewSQL and make the case for how NewSQL is the database technology that’s best suited for 5G networks. Here are four reasons why that’s the case.

  1. Scalability

    While NoSQL supports applications at scale (e.g., Facebook), they’ve sacrificed ACID compliance to achieve that scalability. NewSQL databases, on the other hand, were designed to bring scalability to applications while maintaining ACID compliance.

  2. Availability

    NoSQL databases are highly available. But they sacrifice consistency for that availability. NewSQL databases work the opposite way, favoring consistency over availability. As such, a NewSQL system will return the same answer to all clients at the same time.

  3. Consistency

    Since NoSQL databases aren’t optimized for consistency, they don’t support critical telco BSS solutions, like billing and operational support. By prioritizing consistency, telcos that use NewSQL get the peace of mind that comes with knowing clusters will remain operational even if node-to-node communication breaks down.

  4. Performance

    While NoSQL solutions can process request-response style apps at high volume, they don’t support consistent transactions at scale (e.g., connecting a mobile call while verifying a user’s balance). Since ACID transactions are a requirement from these kinds of applications, NewSQL systems are the ideal solution for this use case.

NoSQL or NewSQL: What’s your pick?

CSPs that fail to architect modernized BSS solutions on top of the right database technology will simply be unable to unlock the true promise of 5G technology.

To learn more about whether NoSQL or NewSQL is best for your organization, read our eBook, SQL vs. NoSQL vs. NewSQL and Why NoSQL (and SQL) Mostly Fall Short for 5G.

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