5G And Beyond: The Digital Future
Voice and Data|February 2021
Discussion around higher speed and performance of 5G over its predecessors tend to miss the forest for the trees. Studies reveal greater RoI over short term from private networks
TV Ramachandran

As India races into a digital future, 5G will assume a critical role in not only enabling enhanced and specialized applications of increasingly modern communications technology, but also, for the first time, provide new types of socio-economic benefits in many industry verticals. Not only does the technology offer the means to connect users to a high-performance network, it also enables use cases that offer greater and unprecedented value.

While the advent of the public internet offered connected users a revolutionary way to exchange information, it was in a largely static form. It was, however, a significant departure from the technology of the day and ushered in an unimaginable era of innovation and progress across sectors and economies. With ever increasing demand and potential of video services, 5G is poised to usher in a similarly significant evolution from 4G. Its ability to carry large amounts of traffic make it an ideal vehicle for the distribution of video-based applications and services for the growing urban appetite as well as for the accelerated adoption of communications services in rural areas.

The real time features of the technology enable industrial use cases that enhance networks’ ability to address challenges faced by businesses around the world. It is perhaps for this reason that conversations about industrial 5G tend to evolve into discussions about industry 4.0.

Recently, Nokia CTO Randeep Raina made a compelling case for 5G as not only the fifth iteration of mobile communications technology for humans, but also as the first true generation of communications technology fit for machines. This is a great expression of the uniqueness of 5G. The ability to integrate machines into communications networks is not novel, but 5G is the only communications technology that comes close to offering a level of performance and mobility deemed suitable for use in modern machine-to-machine and internet of things (IoT) use cases. With increasing demand for real-time connectivity across demographics, devices, sensors and automation protocols, successful applications of industrial 5G will deliver solutions that effectively capture the value up for grab.

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