Few people realize that the communications, internet connectivity are the backbones of the entire tech world. YouTube didn’t exist in 1990 not because developers couldn’t create the platform but because people didn’t have fast and reliable data connectivity to watch videos online. Same is the case with almost every popular service and technology we are surrounded by- with most of them getting useless the moment data connectivity is lost.
This is the reason when we talk about the arrival of next-generation wireless technology- 5G, we aren’t just looking at faster internet connectivity for streaming 4K videos or downloading movies within seconds- that’s just a minute part of it. The real exciting part is that it will work as the enabling technology for an entirely different class of services and technologies. Just like 3G virtually created the entire domain of online streaming on mobile devices, 5G has yet more advanced and exponential potential. And we are certain to get a glimpse of that future at CES 2018- the world’s biggest consumer electronics event held annually.
Now, before we start exploring various avenues of evolution that 5G will bring, you must first realize that the shift from 4G to 5G has these three major benefits apart from the faster data connectivity:
- They are reliable and offer uniform service- unlike our current generation networks that heavily fluctuate the speed depending on location and congestion.
- They have much larger bandwidth and can support a larger number of devices than our current networks.
- They are lightning fast when it comes to responding to client’s request, almost 400 times faster than the current networks.
If you compare these offerings of 5G with the needs of those IoT devices for mass adoption, it’s a perfect match. They also need to be reliable; they are large in numbers and have to work in real time. Mind it, when we talk about large numbers, we aren’t talking about a few billions but tens of billion and real-time isn’t about seconds but microseconds. Let’s now take a look at some of its potential:
Smart home and smart cities
We, at CES, can expect to see many IoT gadgets– from door lock and showers to traffic sensors and warning systems. With capabilities of fast and reliable connectivity for an extremely large number of sensors, possibilities are virtually limitless.
Want the fire sprinkler at your home to be connected to city’s water supply system? Or that the traffic camera calls an ambulance when it sees a collision? Consider it done!
Yes, we know that you have been hearing it for quite a while now but with 5G, it finally will have the requisite infrastructure to make the miracle happen. Since each car has thousands of sensors and accidents are always milliseconds away, the current networks are simply not capable of handling large autonomous fleets. At the CES event, we can expect a few automobile giants to showcase their achievements where autonomous cars, all the sensors in cities, and the central hub will work in tandem by leveraging low latency and high bandwidth of the network.
Didn’t get tickets for your favorite concert or the sports event? Just put on your VR head and with such fast connectivity, you can have a truly immersive experience in 360-degree 4K videos without it ever buffering. In addition to that, we are also a long way into creating a hyperreal experience where you can also touch and feel what you see. So, when we finally get there, why would you ever need to walk to the stadium?