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September 06, 2016

5G Expected to be "Game Changer" for a Number of Industries

It's a safe bet that, at this point, everyone expects 5G to be a real “game changer” when it makes its commercial debut in about three years. A new report from Ericsson, meanwhile, suggests that this viewpoint is fairly universal, and across a wide number of industries too. The report also gave some insight on how companies are expecting to put this new technology to work when it makes its appearance as well.

The Ericsson report notes what may be a point too obvious to question: 94 percent of respondents consider next-generation mobile networks to be a key component of overall business development. This does make one wonder about the 6 percent of businesses who apparently don't consider 5G vital, but the sheer bulk of companies answering in the affirmative on this one does serve to solidify the overall value of 5G as fact.

Further, a “large majority” of respondents were planning to make some clear changes to overall business operations, all focused around getting 5G access in place and providing the best potential advantage. The automotive industry expects to put more “connected car” options in place, including things like GPS systems that automatically update down to the minute and include information about traffic. Utility firms expect to use 5G as not only a security measure, but also as a way to improve network capability and cut costs by using Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and similar tools to provide real-time updates about systems in operation. The healthcare field wants to use 5G as a means to improve patients' quality of life—potentially through systems that allow the patient to recover at home instead of in an unfamiliar and sometimes frightening hospital environment—and the list goes on from there.

Basically, industry knows just what regular users have known for some time. With more bandwidth and faster speeds, more can be done overall. New markets can be opened up that weren't there before—this is especially important toward addressing the ongoing problem of rural connectivity we're seeing not only in the United States but also abroad—and new products and services can be developed. Already we're hearing some word that slow mobile service is slowing down the adoption of things like mobile payments and other such technologies, and we know that many great new technologies require more bandwidth, particularly virtual reality. With 5G, we may well be able to address these issues and more, and that's good news for just about everybody, assuming we're ready to take advantage when it comes.

There's a lot we can do with the extra bandwidth 5G is likely to offer, and the Ericsson report makes it clear that users will be ready for it. We could be looking at a major tech revival to come, powered by a big new flood of bandwidth. 

Edited by Alicia Young

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