Let’s get right to the meat and potatoes of this incredible deal: 5G Internet service is coming, and soon. But for many people, and businesses who understand this new technology, perhaps not soon enough. Most phones, home networks, and businesses are currently using 4G technology, or more specifically 4G LTE.
What Does the ‘G’ Stand For?
One of the most confusing aspects of 3G, 4G, and now 5G wireless technology involves what, exactly, this all means. It’s really not all that confusing or mysterious. The ‘G’ essentially refers to ‘generation.’ So, 5G is going to be the fifth generation of wireless technology that essentially allows smartphones, laptops, and tablets work.
The first generation was analog, but then shifted to digital with 2G which also saw a boost in connection speeds and latency. That’s a fancy way of saying things ran smoother with fewer downtimes and failures of the connections. It also became a more secure network for data transfer (every time you send a text or picture with your phone, it’s out in the ether where, if it wasn’t encrypted properly, it could be intercepted … just imagine what some nefarious individuals might do with some of those messages you sent all these years).
Fortunately, 3G and 4G not only became faster, allowing more fluid and encrypted transfer of data (allowing us to watch videos and Facetime or Skype with family and friends), it also opened up a host of new possibilities for businesses.
How Businesses Benefit from Increased Wireless Technology
More consumers today are turning to the Internet to shop. In fact, according to a recent survey, approximately 79% of consumers shop online (Forbes). Of course, that was in 2016 and the numbers are only increasing. A company that takes advantage of the fastest technology will not only benefit from increased exposure to a growing consumer base online, it can also capitalize on better speeds and lower latency within the office itself.
Companies will have improved access to communication options, meaning they will be able to streamline a number of processes more fluidly (and faster). This might mean teleconferencing with more confidence whereas crucial meetings had to take place in person due to the increased latency issues or slower connection speeds. 5G will also make it possible to host more people on a teleconference or videoconference feed.
Still Confused? Try Video Chatting on a Service Provider
Whether it’s Skype, Facetime, or any of a hundred other providers, contact someone in your network and have a video chat with them. What usually happens? The connection is made, but there’s a delay in the feed, it might freeze a few times, or act all ‘glitchy’ (which happens to be one of the most common terms used to describe this phenomena.
All of that is due to limited bandwidth and speeds, not to mention latency issues that will be dramatically improved with 5G technology. Now, when 5G is finally launched (AT&T is expected to be the first sometime later in 2018), the difference is expected to be monumental. Many of those ‘glitches’, freezes, hang ups, etc. will no longer be an issue.
That means small to large businesses will be able to communicate more effectively -with coworkers, leadership, and even consumers.
New Applications Will Soon Be on the Way, Too
Communication is just one area that will be dramatically and instantaneously improved upon with the launch of 5G technology. However, keep in mind that this wireless technology boost will depend on the devices that can handle it. Currently, those are not available, but they’re coming soon.
Yes, that means new smartphones and tablets, routers, etc. will be needed, but that’s a small price to pay to improve so many facets of modern business climates. And even when 5G is launched and companies start implementing the necessary tools to take full advantage of it, those first devices will go between 4G and 5G, as needed, in order to maintain consistency (5G will initially be launched in small regions of major cities and will only have a range of about 1,000 meters).
But, once this technology becomes more mainstreamed, the next wave of apps will soon follow, bent on capitalizing on the increased speeds and lower latency rates.
The more tools a company has at its disposal for communication, the smoother it can operate and also rely on experienced professionals, even if they don’t live near headquarters. This could lead to more telecommuting work opportunities and other benefits.
Finally, VoIP Will Change Forever, Too
VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, will change with 5G technology. Since VoIP relied on Internet speeds through a router (wirelessly or through an ethernet connection), this, too, will improve. The tools available to these companies will also improve.
Landlines will become unnecessary and obsolete as the smooth transfer of data over these VoIP networks improves. The opportunities will grow as 5G is implemented over the next couple of years and for any business looking for a competitive edge, this is a powerful one that will certainly benefit those who jump in when it’s finally available.