With the promise of faster speeds, greater capacity, reliability and flexibility, 5G has arrived with a purpose, and with it, comes a wealth of opportunities for businesses to develop and grow.
According to a study from Qualcomm, 5G could underpin up to £9.3 trillion worth of goods and services in industries such as retail, healthcare, education, transportation, entertainment and more by 2035. To support this, a report from PSB Research found that 91% of its respondents foresee new products and services on the horizon, that haven’t been invented yet.
Expectations are high. Whilst the development of Wi-Fi has enabled businesses to become more flexible, it is not always the most convenient and reliable source, and for some industries, it is not always compatible with the environment it needs to work in.
In addition to being much faster, 5G is set to open a number of new use cases for mobile data, exploring the possibility of new products and services and ultimately, increasing productivity across a range of industries, along the way.
5G will feature highly across healthcare with remote and robotic surgery developing quickly. However, on the ground, a forecast from O2 suggests that 5G will free up 1 million hours of GP time and represent up to £1.3 billion in productivity gains thanks to reduced workplace absence. The sector will also benefit from the low latency capabilities of 5G, particularly useful when communicating with patients – even those who live in the most rural of areas. This will allow limited healthcare resources to scale.
Automation will feature highly here. As an industry that is under pressure to constantly deliver products faster, creating smart factories will better manage resource, reduce costs and make processes more efficient, enabling companies to deliver their targets faster, and gain a competitive advantage as a result.
For motorists, 5G is likely to impact every element of owning a car, including the driving experience itself. Driverless cars used to be a matter of fiction but 5G is making this a reality. For those commuting on trains, Matt Hancock, Minister for Digital, has claimed that each train in the UK should expect to reach speeds of 1 Gigabit Per Second. Ideas such as this will mean many people can expect to work as they travel – regardless of mode of transport.
As for telecommunications, the growing demand and capabilities of 5G will mean that many network operators will have to address use cases beyond mobile capacity, including developing ways in which networks can handle diverse connectivity and service requirements.