Since the technology revolution began a decade ago, it has affected every aspect of society, including business. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work and e-commerce increased dramatically, and how people communicate and consume media changed profoundly.
5G will play a critical role in enabling the widespread adoption of digital tools and skills to enable greater flexibility and resilience in dealing with future risks and uncertainties, according to the World Economic Forum’s 5G Outlook report. Additionally, it will open up new opportunities for small and midsized businesses (SMBs).
What is 5G?
Let’s start with the basics. Fifth-generation mobile networks promise a faster connection and lower latency than their predecessors. There is an expectation that 5G will usher in a new era of connectedness, processing, and digitization. Qualcomm estimates it will create 22 million jobs and contribute $12.3 Trillion to the global economy by 2035.
5G is designed to use shorter, higher-frequency bands of wireless spectrum to achieve lower latency, faster speeds, and greater load capacities. According to some researchers, 5G could deliver browsing and download speeds that are 10 to 20 times faster than current 4G networks in real-world conditions.
Globally, IT teams are getting ready to embrace the next-generation network as data and mobility become more critical to business operations. Sixty-six percent of businesses plan on deploying 5G by 2020, reports one study.
Five-generation networks are getting a lot of attention and for good reason. With 5G, businesses will be able to enjoy much more reliable networks and faster data transfer speeds.
What can 5G Offer to Businesses?
Here are some of the advantages this technology could offer.
1. Increased reliability
In the hype surrounding 5G, a lot of focus is placed on its speed, and that is true. From a network perspective, some predict that 5G will be 1000 times faster than 4G. Business consumers will experience anywhere from 10 to 100 times more than they do now.
You’ll notice the difference right away! In addition, 5G networks will also be more resilient. Every day, more devices connect to networks, so new networks must increase their capacity to handle all those connections at once.
To succeed, 5G needs to be able to withstand various challenges. Multiple small cells will be built in urban areas by developers like Nokia Networks 5G to take up the slack. There will also be a lower latency with 5G or a quicker time for internet requests to complete.
2. Access won’t be immediate.
5G is expected to be faster and more resilient, with low latency. However, developers will need time to make this work. In spite of the attention 5G is getting, we won’t see 5G for at least another five years.
During the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, for example, we expect to see a demonstration of what 5G will look like before then. You won’t have to upgrade all of your equipment at once, which is actually good news for business owners!
In order to cope with the high demand for 5G, a global standard must be agreed upon because it will require higher frequency radio bands. Data will be carried faster by 5G radios because of these higher frequency bands, but more radio masts will be needed in close clusters. The rollout of 5G will take some time.
3. More exciting long-distance communication
As soon as 5G is available, it will make communicating with long-distance colleagues and clients easier and more exciting. Using 3D holographic calls might even be possible if you don’t have to worry about dropped calls during video chats. Skype has already discussed this technology, so it could be here sooner than you think.
4. Better mobility
Small-business owners can use 5G to mobilize their operations and deliver a more seamless customer experience, wherever their customers are.
Tools such as remote credit card processing and order-taking tablets were made possible by 4G. With 5G, we can go farther. Mobile devices will be able to remotely connect with a small business in near real-time through the next-generation network — interactions that will seamlessly transform into secure transactions.
Additionally, 5G eventually will enable a higher density of devices that can handle high transaction volumes in crowded spaces, such as at sold-out concerts, sporting events, or busy local farmers’ markets.
5. Improved customer service
Customers can visualize products more easily using advanced technologies such as augmented reality — they can see, right on their phone, what a makeup application and manicured garden landscape would look like, or how a high-tech hospital building will look.
But to process large data files quickly without bottlenecks, augmented and virtual reality applications require high bandwidth. Customers and small business owners are frustrated by a choppy augmented reality experience when the connection is throttled.
Small businesses can also benefit from 5G by leveraging more sophisticated technologies to increase sales.
By enabling seamless connectivity, 5G can improve productivity and customer satisfaction. 5G could be an invaluable tool to maintain a competitive advantage for small businesses since they need to do more with less money.
6. More efficient office
This technology has the potential to revolutionize the office environment. With the rise of superfast networks, small businesses always seeking to cut costs will be able to better coordinate their devices and increase their efficiency.
You’d be able to turn appliances on and off automatically based on your predicted use, and you could offer super-of-the-moment sales alerts to customers. Consider what mobile apps can do today, then imagine what they could do with near-instantaneous data alerts. As a business owner, you should pay attention to 5G development for all these reasons.
By partnering with managed service providers that have invested in cybersecurity and other enabling technologies, you can seize the opportunities of 5G faster. You can access advanced technologies through these partnerships rather than reinventing the wheel or paying for labor and expertise that are not readily available.
Small businesses can turn to managed service providers to move processes to the cloud, implement cybersecurity protocols, or prepare their digital infrastructure for 5G.