5G Technology – A Stepping Stone for Telcos

With the introduction of 5G technology, businesses in the telecommunication industry are going to face rising demand from customers to get their hands on the all-new ‘ultra-fast’ mobile network. How are telcos and CSPs meeting the existing demand in the market? What are the technologies used in meeting these demands? What are the future plans in digitization for service providers?

Moving back in time to 1979 when the 1st generation (1G) was introduced,  service providers did not face risks such as misinformation, the increased risk of data breaches, and the constant need to evolve. However, with the development of technology resulting in products such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets, enterprises now need to invest heavily in cutting edge solutions such as Cloud Solutions, the Internet of Things, Fintech Solutions, Artificial Intelligence, and much more in order to stay alive.

What is it?

5G refers to the 5th generation of mobile networks and is set to be the ‘all-new’ global wireless standard filling the gap between ultra-high speeds and connectivity.

5G technology is based on Orthogonal frequency-division Multiplexing (OFDM), a method known to modulate a digital signal across a variety of channels, reducing interference and an uninterrupted connection

5G has a long way to go, nevertheless, its benefits are already clear:

  • Ultra-reliability and Low Latency – With 5G, latency is expected to drop by more than a factor of 10.
  • Massive Machine Type Comms (mMTC) – 5G will consist of the ability to have multiple devices per subscriber passing large volumes of data.
  • Network Slicing – 5G will allow operators to have different applications meet their different requirements through ‘slicing’. Slicing can mean a lot, but in the telecommunication world, it refers to the use of network visualization to divide / ‘slice’ single network connections into multiple connections offering a variety of resources and traffic.

With 5G slicing, network operators will be able to implement only the required functions needed for specific customers, supporting their requirements. All of which lead operators to be able to focus on key UX’s of their services – customizing them to enhance the overall customer experience.

How was it created?

Debates around who really was the first to develop the 5G mobile network are plenty. Ericsson identifies the developers as a joint effort between leading telcos, CSPs, and enterprises in and out of the telecommunications industry with the aid of the standardization organization, 3GPP. Furthermore, GSMA is playing a key role in the development of 5G cases and is working in close relations across industries ranging from healthcare, transport, financial services, automobile, and many more.

The global 5G standardization guarantees that devices and networks will work hand in hand,  regardless of your location or the device you use.

What is the difference?

Companies around the world, across industries are rushing to achieve the fastest and largest 5G networks, but why?  5G mobile networks possess a few key characteristics  that set them apart from the previous mobile networks, mainly 4G, with the most common changes being faster speeds, higher bandwidth and lower latency.

1. Speed

The most anticipated factor with the 5G mobile network. As mentioned before, 5G is expected to be 100 times faster than the previous 4G, meaning subscribers can now download in flashing speeds.

This improved speed will  benefit users when it comes to streaming, gaming and other applications, but how can they benefit outside them? The high speeds coming from a 5G network will allow businesses to track, analyze and manage their data at a much faster rate all of which result in improved and efficient business decisions.

These speeds are only achievable because they travel through super-high-frequency airwaves or a high-band spectrum.

2. Capacity

Multiple devices using the same network in the same place is bound to eat up bandwidth and cause frustration. Mobile networks prior to 4G did not have the ability to support the mass number of devices which resulted in slower speeds and longer download times.

The launch of 5G is aimed at solving this and then some. This next gen network is expected to have a lot more ‘capacity’ than previous networks meaning numerous devices can be connected to the same network at the same time while still experiencing ultra-fast speeds. With the increased capacity from the new-gen mobile network, businesses of all sizes are able to benefit – creating opportunities for smaller businesses to now compete with market players and leaders. The increased speeds together with capacity is going to revolutionize how businesses, big and small,  collect, analyze and interpret customer data, secure their customer base, and even attract new subscribers.

Similarly, with the official global rollout of the 5G mobile network, its not just the businesses that can benefit, but also the communities, especially given the current remote working strategy most businesses adopted.

Claire Duffy from CNN Business identifies how experts compare 5G to a freeway – with more lanes for more cars to drive on. The increased capacity will create more bandwidth for the IoT era.

3. Latency

What sets latency apart from speed? Latency refers to the time it takes for devices to communicate with each other or a server they are retracting information from.

Even though latency is measured in milliseconds and already low with the existing mobile networks, 5G aims to reduce it beyond its existence. Businesses in the gaming and automotive industries will benefit greatly with the extremely low levels of latency with the next gen network as gamers and products such as self-driving cars can work at a much more productive and effective rate, sending and receiving signals at a much faster rate.

Are You Ready?

Image Source: TM Forum

Stay tuned to learn more about the advancements in the global telecommunications industry and how service providers are constantly adapting to new and innovative solutions via our BLOG page.

Browse through our services to explore how we #atthelab can assist you take the first step or fast-track your digital transformation journey.

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