Fifth generation broadband, or 5G, is already available in select markets, but is still very much in its early stages. Verizon was the first company in the United States to launch its 5G network, with AT&T following soon after with 5G Evolution. Going from 3G to 4G was a nice step up, but the jump from 4G to 5G will be monumental. 5G is still being developed so we don’t know all the details just yet, but experts say 5G should be at least 10 times faster than 4G, and up to 20 times faster at peak performance.
It’s going to be at least a year, and probably longer until 5G is rolled out nationwide and once it does, businesses will be able to reap the benefits. Among the areas 5G will improve on are latency, the internet of things (IOT) and high data rates. But what are these, and how will they help improve your business?
Latency is the time it takes to get a response after you make a request. For example, the time it takes in a shooting video game, like Call of Duty, for the gun to fire after you click the trigger on your controller. Lower latency will help many industries such as autonomous cars, gaming and virtual reality, medicine, and factories.
The decreased latency will be particularly noticeable, and beneficiary in video calls such as Skype or Facetime. With LTE the latency is around 40-50 milliseconds, but with 5G latency could reach as low as 1 millisecond—which is undetectable to the human eye.
Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IOT) is an extension of the internet in which physical devises with an internet connection communicate and interact with each other. These devises can also be monitored and controlled.
Everything from a smartphone to autonomous cars to smart thermostats are connected to IOT. However, there’s just too many devises for 4G to cater to alone. With 5G working with 4G LTE and Wifi, it will open up several possibilities for the IOT. Driver-less cars, remote robotic surgery, augmented and virtual reality, and much more.
High Data Rates
High data rates and lower latency are the two benefits of 5G that will be felt by most businesses. Internet speed is measured in megabits per second (mbps). LTE normally reaches about 50 mbps and peaks at about 1 gigbit per second (gbps). 5G will probably range from anywhere as low as 300 mbps to 20 gbps. That’s up to 20 times faster than LTE.
The implications of faster internet connection will reach every business that so much as uses a computer. With speeds this high businesses and workers will be able to get more work done, faster.
These are some of the notable improvements that will come with 5G, but how can they help to improve businesses? No matter the size of the business or its industry, 5G will make the business much more efficient. The ability to access, upload and download files to the cloud and the faster internet speeds alone ensure this.
Working remotely isn’t something that will be new with 5G, but it will be greatly improved with higher quality video calls and more integrated workstations away from the office. Every industry will be impacted by 5G in some way, shape or form. Even augmented and virtual reality could become a powerful tool in retail to better sell products to consumers. It’s going to be a few years until we really see the effects of 5G, but we’ll all be better for it once it comes.