Welcome to the new blogpost by the ThingForward team! Today we will introduce to you the 5G technology. The new generation of cellular mobile connection provides a lot of features upon older versions as 4G, 3G and 2G. Apart from the advantages on data rate, download/upload speed, the major feature of 5G is providing a network for Internet of Things. 5G will help to rise IoT technology by providing infrastructure that sensors and smart devices need in order to deal with huge amount of data transmission. Just like we've already been digging narrowband IoT protocol, 5G should be also studied out in details.
Today's blogpost will start with examining 5G by its advantages first. In further topics, the technical background and the numbers will be given. After introducing the cells and spectrum, the readiness of the countries will be stated. In the end, we will discuss the relation between 5G and IoT. So, let's start with its advantages!
At the first glance, here are the advantages of 5G upon older cellular mobile communication protocols, which is working alongside 2G, 3G and 4G:
Every new protocol in cellular network offers these advantages alongside the former ones. For understanding the improvement, let's look at the targets of 5G protocol in numbers.
The increased throughput of 5G needed larger quantities of band allocation. However, first let us understand that there are 3 types of cells:
One of the key factors is the readiness of the countries for the 5G protocol. According to the Europe 5G Readiness Index of INCITES, we encourage you to read the full report too, here are the readiness ratios of leading countries:
On the original report, other countries can be also observed. The second analysis of 5G shows the trials of countries:
It might be interesting to analyse the countries like Spain, that has the highest number of trials, but ranks 17th in readiness. On the other hand Sweden only has 2 trials but is quite ready for 5G as it ranks 2nd in readiness report.
When it comes to the related hardware, only 4 companies are producing hardware for 5G. These are Nokia, Huawei, ZTE and Ericsson. The equipment from ZTE and Huawei somehow pulled the trigger in some countries concerning national security and data transmission. This reason led countries, such as Japan, to ban the usage of 5G equipment from these companies. Nevertheless, these concerns are dismissed by other countries. UK and US are still sceptical about using 5G equipment from Huawei, on the other hand Germany might have no problem with deploying them. No need to state, the political side and the bureaucracy between the countries will lead the spread of these equipments.
According to a forecast from Business Insider, here is the IoT device installation base growth in following years:
This graph tells us that there will be around 22.5 billion connected IoT devices by year 2021. This huge ecosystem will need a better protocol, and 5G looks like an amazing option.
There are innumerable researches for forecasting the impact of 5G on IoT. The expectation from 5G is to provide a better ecosystem for IoT devices in order to connect the units for a smarter life. There is no denying the fact that it will be faster, but it is not the only magic that will happen.
Lower latency will make 5G more suitable for traffic control and connected cars, which helps for smoother traffic control, and also for real-time applications and controls. An autonomous car can be given as an example, which drives 100 km/h and needs an immediate stop because of a critical sensor problem. With a stop command with 500ms latency would stop the car in 13.5 meters but with 5G, it would be around only 2,7 meters. As another example, a doctor in China have performed a brain surgery over 5G from 3000 kilometres away with only 0.1 seconds of latency.
5G will also solve complicated device deployment in companies by eliminating crowded data transfer thanks to its data transmission capability. On the production site, which is thought as full automated production, the real-time M2M communication will play a key role. An immediate touch with short latency would save maybe millions in car production site. Other examples can be easily found for robotics, augmented and virtual reality, smart home systems and so on.
The fifth generation of the cellular mobile communication protocol is coming soon! It has plenty of improvements which will simplify our daily lives. This protocol will bring us more efficient connectivity, faster communication, selection of different type of cells according to our desired power consumption, lower latency and powerful network capability of handling billions of connected devices. It is not surprising to find blogposts which discredit 5G and its future on IoT. Lots of companies have already designed and produced the hardware which are compatible with 2G, 3G and 4G, but with this revolution in cellular network protocols, they have a huge fear for falling behind the technology. The hardware producers are only 4 companies so far, but we hope that it will be increased this year.
As ThingForward, we are following all the news about IoT and 5G. On the following blogposts, we will be going deeper in this field. That's all for today. Thank you for reading!