Wireless carriers across the globe have started deploying the latest in mobile connectivity: 5G. But what exactly is it and why should it matter to small businesses? Read on to find out how 5G is stirring attention across various industries.
The next step in cellular data transmission
5G is the fifth generation of wireless mobile technology. Similar to Apple releasing a new iOS or Microsoft releasing a new version of Windows, the development of 5G ushers in groundbreaking enhancements. While 4G kicked off the era of mobile internet, 5G will expand mobile networks to support more devices and eventually unify a broad range of industries, including IT, retail, manufacturing, healthcare, entertainment, and education.
From 3G enabling users to read an article on a mobile phone to 4G allowing them to stream videos, 5G will see an exponential rise in download and upload speeds across every internet-connected device. It will also set the scene for the easy connection of these devices to a single network as well as a massive shift to cloud computing.
Faster speeds and lower latency
Perhaps the most defining characteristic of 5G is its unprecedented speed — it can transmit data 20 times faster than 4G on average. This means it’s now possible to download movies in under 10 seconds, whereas doing so using 4G might take around 10 minutes. In addition to breakneck speeds, 5G touts lower latency, which is the time it takes to move data back and forth. As a result, online applications and services such as video conferencing and real-time collaboration can now run with shorter to almost no delays.
Other primary offerings of 5G are greater bandwidth and capacity to run multiple applications simultaneously. These are significant upgrades that will allow users to complete tasks more smoothly and efficiently. 5G’s unique characteristics are especially beneficial for businesses, allowing them to better meet industry and client demands as well as stay ahead of competitors.
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Network slicing and improved cybersecurity
One of the most innovative features of 5G is network slicing. This allows operators to divide a single physical network into multiple virtual networks, each of which can be customized according to particular types of services or client groups. Essentially, this means that a business can have its own private 5G network dedicated to its specific needs. With network slicing, operators can also deploy their products and services quickly and flexibly to accommodate disparate and evolving demands.
Network slicing also benefits cybersecurity: since virtual networks are separated, breaches won’t be able to spread easily to other networks. This setup’s resilience and added security offer businesses more services and a better user experience.
Opportunities and challenges
Working remotely already offers numerous advantages like greater flexibility and productivity, but having 5G connectivity makes it even better. With a high-speed and reliable internet connection, remote workers can communicate and collaborate with colleagues and clients in an instant. Additionally, they can perform network-related tasks such as uploading massive files online with greater ease and efficiency.
This connectivity can also allow businesses to utilize immersive experiences, such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), to make remote meetings feel more immediate and interactive. What’s more, by empowering remote work, 5G won’t just increase business productivity but also lower overhead costs associated with working in an actual office space.
In addition to connecting users, 5G serves as a unified platform and can be used to link up and control machines, objects, and devices. For instance, those in the farming industry can use wireless technology to keep tabs on autonomous smart tractors, and vehicle manufacturers can use 5G technologies to develop self-driving cars. The advent of 5G will pave the way for new user experiences with promises of improved performance, efficiency, and cost.
Adopting 5G technologies, however, comes with certain nuances and responsibilities. To learn more about these and how 5G can help improve your business, get in touch with an expert managed services provider (MSP) like Quicktech. You can reach out to our IT experts here or download our free eBook 5 Big Ways IT Outsourcing Can Boost Your Company's Productivity to learn more about how MSPs can help increase your business’s productivity.
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