With 5G set to reach a number of UK cities in just a few months’ time, we thought you’d like to know why this highly anticipated network is set to revolutionise both business communication.
In case you haven’t heard, 5G is the next generation of wireless networking technology and it promises to bring faster speeds, faster connections and faster access to the cloud. The network will help power a huge rise in Internet of Things (IoT) technology, providing the infrastructure that is needed to carry huge amounts of data, opening up opportunities for a smarter and more connected world.
What’s the difference between 4G and 5G?
In a nutshell, 5G will provide a significantly faster connection – rumour has it up to 100 times faster, in fact. With speeds of up to 2.3GB, it is set to be faster than most fixed line broadband connections in the UK.
The key differentiator between 4G and 5G is something called low latency. Latency is the time that passes from the moment information is sent from a device to the point that it can be used or viewed by the person receiving it. This reduced latency that 5G offers will make it easy to download and upload files quickly and easily, without the fear of the network or a device suddenly crashing. It will also make it possible to watch a 4K resolution video almost immediately, without that painful buffering time!
So, how will it impact businesses?
- More reliable conference calling
With significantly faster download speeds and better and more consistent network coverage, 5G will have a positive impact on productivity. It will offer other exciting innovations too, particularly when it comes to video. As video content becomes even more accessible, for example, advance streaming will be used by more businesses. 5G will support this with more interactive experiences – which are currently restricted by download speeds – and make conference and multi-location calls much more reliable.
- Improved connectivity
The most significant benefit for businesses will be improved connectivity; particularly businesses that use remote workers. O2 has forecast that this improved connectivity will deliver time savings in business that could result in £6 billion a year in productivity savings across the UK.
- Cost saving
Another benefit for businesses is the cost saving element.5G is predicted to extend the battery life of devices by up to ten times, so businesses will see immediate savings in terms of their hardware and infrastructure. 5G networks will also enable a shift in being hardware-based to more software and systems based. The benefits of software-based network environments include a reduction in the burden and expense of equipment maintenance and monitoring.
- Data capability
Organisations are increasingly fuelled by data, so the speed at which information is moved from one point to the next is vital. Data contains more detail than ever before, and the great news is 5G will allow companies to shift huge volumes of data in minimal time. Over a full-strength 1Gbps connection, for example, it will be possible to download a 5GB file in less than a minute; the same file travelling over a 36Mbps connection – which is the UK residential average – would take closer to 20 minutes to arrive.
- IoT potential
While the arrival of the 5G network will undoubtedly help to power the Internet of Things (IoT) on a consumer level, there are also the advantages it will offer within a business environment. As IoT-enabled devices start to play a key role in our daily lives, business networks won’t just support smartphones, laptops and tablets, they will also enable the control of things such as light bulbs, climate control devices and digital displays! 5G networks will be an ideal platform for managing all of these devices as they can manage machine-to-machine communication for up to a million devices per square kilometre.
While 5G is not yet available in the UK, it is important that businesses understand the impact that it could have on their future strategies and supply chain, especially as the world becomes more and more data driven. If you have any questions, we have telecommunications experts in our team who would be more than happy to answer them, so give us a call.