The advent of 5G is one of the most significant technological transformations of the 21st century, with implications that will be felt across industries and sectors. The key aim of 5G will be to deliver the future – it will herald an era of wireless technology that will support a wide range of applications and use cases, such as smart homes, key infrastructure, healthcare, education, media delivery, and lots more.
Not just that, 5G is going to be fundamental in accelerating the development of the video industry as well. With its characteristics of high speed and large capacity, 5G will help video embrace promising prospects in the future. In a panel discussion titled “Powering the Next Generation Network with 5G”, Mridu Bhandari, Special Projects Editor at Network 18, along with industry veterans and experts, also brought to a sharp focus this impending network transformation. The panel delved into how the 5G era will drive artificial intelligence and video usage trends in India and the world over in the future.
A paradigm shift in consumer experience
Unlike 3G or 4G, 5G is currently the first globally unified communication standard. This means that 5G has lower promotion costs, more flexible applications, and greater potential than all other previous communication standards.
And now that 2020 has officially established itself as a tech-dominated year, consumers have also quickly evolved to become more tech-savvy than ever. As staying connected virtually becomes the new normal, smartphones are also doubling up as broadband connectivity devices in India, which is crucial to usher in a paradigm shift in consumer experience and business processes.
With the era of 5G, we will also see a lot of possibilities, such as rapid and quick streaming with Ultra HD viewing, becoming our reality. We witnessed how 4G affected people in past few years, 5G is expected to achieve wider coverage in the next few years, and there will also be more diverse 5G devices and innovative 5G services.5G will transform and make smartphone use even more intuitive for the consumer, offering them a seamless and personalised experience in their palms. And it matches the projection of videos emerging as the biggest and most popular media format on smartphones. “Just imagine faster speeds, faster downloads, increased bandwidth and no latency, such as you experience now. That will be the promise of the 5G era for all of us,” says Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group, CMR.
With more and more countries working towards the establishment of 5G, it will provide greater potential for users as well as enterprises to set new communication standards. As Kuldeep Malik, Director - Corporate Sales, MediaTek India says, “It will transform the sectors that use an array of applications, such as manufacturing, energy, utilities, smart cities, public safety, corporate affairs and transport. They will be the focus areas of improvement, during 5G adoption in India.”
For instance, the Adtech industry has already been working to leverage the advent of 5G. Even in the realms of 3D rendering and AR and VR gaming, 5G will expand growth horizons for them, in turn providing for a more interactive user experience as well. And as 5G brings more possibilities to AR, it will completely revolutionize the way we consume and share video content.
In addition, 5G will also reshape the way consumers currently view mobile internet and pave the way for a more technology-inclusive future. In the blink of an eye, you will be able to download a 4K or 8K Ultra HD movie or transfer hundreds of high-resolution photos; experience live sporting events and performances via Ultra HD video streaming as if you were physically there.
How prepared are we for 5G?
Though eager to embrace this powerful and seamless technology, India may face some challenges, which some global markets are already grappling with. Even though at a nascent stage in India, the biggest concern for 5G is related to the availability of spectrum. Then there are also concerns about backhaul connectivity and the cost sensitivity of the deployment. These issues will have to be redressed to enable the mass proliferation of 5G in India at a consumer and enterprise level. Moreover, enterprises will have to innovate and gear their products and services for an era of increased video consumption by integrating relevant features.
As Prof. Abhay Karandikar, Director at IIT Kanpur and a member of TRAI, explains, “It is really important that the broadband experience on a cell phone is significantly improved. Enhanced mobile broadband use in case of 5G will enable that, along with the promise of ultra-fast speeds, better connectivity and enhanced reliability.”
For a quick rollout of 5G technologies, it’s also important for the government, manufacturers and service providers to coordinate and be ready. Tasleem Arif, Vice President, India R&D Head-OPPO Mobiles India, brings this to light by stating that “Readiness from all sides and operators is also going to play a key role. At our local R&D centre, we are very closely working with all operators. We are conducting lab tests with top Indian operators and making sure that our devices are ready for 5G.” He further predicts that in the next one or two years, India will be ready for 5G. His positive outlook is reinforced by the overwhelming response that OPPO received after being the first smartphone brand to do the first 5G WhatsApp call from India.
Giving consumers and enterprises a new level of control with 5G
In a time of crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen how information and communication are critical. In tandem with other technologies, like AI and IoT, 5G will serve for dynamic and ever-evolving consumer needs, making this as the right time to opt for a 5G device and be ready for the future of technology. Moreover, it will also usher several growth opportunities for businesses. As we continue moving towards a more urbanized world, everyone will have to work together to leverage the many new innovations of 5G, and foster a more connected world.
This is a partnered post.
First Published: IST