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Impact of 5G on Digital Transformation

Story Highlights
  • What is 5g and its implications?
  • How will 5g change the world?
  • Benefits of 5g
  • The digital transformation journey

We are now entering what is being called the 4th industrial revolution. This revolution is being driven by technology such as 5G, the growing IoT, big data, and augmented reality. If your organisation is considering whether you should adopt 5G as the next phase in your digital transformation, here are some things that you need to consider.

5G And The New Industrial Revolution

Technology is now advancing at an unprecedented pace. The 4th industrial revolution promises to expand the scale, complexity, and scope of how businesses operate. Technology now blurs the lines between human interaction and the digital world.

Billions of people across the planet are now connected by mobile devices, and they have almost unlimited access to products and services. What this means for you and your business is that you have expanded market potential, and you also have greater competition. Automation is one of the fastest-growing components of the digital transformation, and it also holds the key to meeting the demands of a growing consumer base and getting ahead of the competition. This is where 5G technology comes into play.

We don’t know which use cases will ultimately be the most important for 5G, but we know that early adopters tend to get a sustainable advantage. Borje Ekholm

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Will 5G Help My Business?

5G is next generation mobile technology that will be faster and able to handle bigger data loads than the current 4G technology can do. This faster speed and greater capacity will allow for faster infrastructure and the ability to support a growing number of devices. The IoT includes everything from self-driving cars to smart refrigerators. It is now possible for surgeons to control robots using wireless networks. Consumer metrics and data-mining also contribute to the need for networks with greater data capacity.

The ability of businesses to take advantage of the digital transformation depends on having a system that can handle all of these new devices and the amount of data that is required. 5G promises to reduce latency and lags in the system. It also promises better coverage with more consistent service. You will no longer experience spotty service in areas that are crowded.

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Is It Too Early to Adopt 5G?

To give you an idea of how fast 5G is compared to the current 4G network, a two-hour movie that takes 7 minutes to download now will take only 10 seconds on 5G. At present, 5G upgrades are being deployed on a city-by-city basis. Currently, many carriers are already adopting 5G technology, including Samsung, LG, Huawei, Motorola, and Apple.

Many companies are quick to embrace this new technology so that they can begin to see the benefits. This brings up the question of whether you should adopt 5G now as part of your digital transformation or wait. In the next several years, many industries are expected to be built exclusively on 5G, including connected healthcare systems, self-driving transportation, and streaming service providers who could benefit from the stability and speed.

First to Use 5G Technology

The businesses that will be impacted first by 5G are those that already depend on digital technology as their backbone. Industries such as supply chain management, oil and gas, airlines, transportation, and banking are expected to be the first to adopt the new technology. The Hitachi Corporation expects the adoption process to begin with infrastructure, and eventually, move to the consumer side.

If you are early in your digital transformation journey, you are probably wondering whether you should wait until 5G is more widespread. The truth is that some telecom operators continue to invest in 4G networks, and they are not going to simply drop their customer base and tell them to buy new devices. 4G will likely be around for a while, especially from a consumer standpoint.

Now, devices are available that can work on both 4G and 5G networks. This might be an excellent way to ease into 5G without cutting out the old technology entirely. Many 5G devices are backward compatible, so there is no reason to wait on your digital transformation investment.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is whether you should continue with your current digital transformation plans or whether you should wait for 5G. Eventually, 5G will replace 4G, but the fact that mobile networks continue to invest in their 4G networks says that this is not likely to happen soon. 5G has many advantages over the older technology, but if your customers and suppliers are still using 4G technology, it might not be the best idea to drop it altogether.

Unlike 4G and previous generations of technology, 5G is very different. It is not just about radio. In fact, it stands across the full network from mobile access to cloud core, from software-defined networking to all forms of backhaul, front haul, IP routing, fixed networks, software, and more. Rajeev Suri

The transition from 4G to 5G will be a slow process, and waiting will only put you behind your competition. The best advice is to continue on your digital transformation process but to do so carefully by choosing devices that can work on both the old and new networks. This is an excellent way to balance your needs now with a long-term strategy, and it provides the most sustainable solution.

 

Imran Zaman

The founder of DIGITI.ORG - The Digital Transformation Magazine. Imran is a Digital Transformation Consultant who helps FTSE 500 companies transform digitally. Imran writes about Business, Technology and Innovation.

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