Behind all the buzz surrounding 5G, there stands a great opportunity for small businesses to embrace this revolutionary change to our connectivity.
With so many people talking about how much better the world will be with 5G. Has anyone ever sat down with you and discussed how your small business can reap the benefits.
Faster and More Efficient
5G promises to keep the world connected more efficiently and with lower latency. Latency is the term used to describe the time it takes for information to go from one device to another.
This is usually measured in milliseconds. At the moment we tend to see between a 30 – 50-millisecond delay on 4G. With 5G this delay would be undetectable to humans being between 0 – 10 milliseconds.
Connecting Everyday Items
On top of that 5G will coincide with the introduction of further smart devices, otherwise known as the Internet of Things (IoT). 5G will breathe life into these, making our life automatic and easier.
An example of how this could be would be, your smart fridge (which will be connected via 5G) will notice what groceries you are running low on and automatically order more in for you. Then the smart fridge will then get these groceries delivered to your address. This will cut out the need to go shopping.
Now that’s only a theoretical example of how IoT will change the way we live. But it’s not an impossible theory. Experts predict there will come a time where humans may never need to drive again as cars will become driverless.
Vehicles will know the destination you wish to go and take you there. Accounting also for any other vehicles on the road and using the internet to find any traffic delays and crashes so the vehicle can find you a quicker and more efficient alternative route.
Predictions go as far as to say in the next 10 years almost everything will become smart and will be connected to the internet.
AI, AR and VR
Another couple of technological advances that you can expect to see more of with the introduction of 5G. This would be more artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality.
Otherwise known as AI, which is essentially the simulation of human processes by machines. These processes would be learning, reasoning, and self-correction. Most AI is categorized into two types –
Weak AI – this system is designed and trained to complete particular tasks. An example of a weak AI would be Apple’s virtual assistant Siri.
Strong AI – Now this system is given general human cognitive abilities. When posed with an unfamiliar task they will find a solution and complete it without the need for human intervention.
This is also known as AR. This is where technology will overlay information and virtual objects in real-world scenes. By using the existing environment and new information to manipulate the view and create an artificial environment.
An example of AR would be a popular mobile game Pokemon Go, which allows players to catch virtual monsters in their current environment. Or the IKEA app which allows users to scan a room and place virtual furniture in it so that people can see if the furniture will look right. Cutting out the need for purchasing and making returns.
Again also is known as VR. VR differs from AR in the sense that a completely new artificial environment is created. Users are then shown this environment which manipulates their view on the real world and they then believe the reality in front of them is in the fact the real world.
Most VR is experienced through a computer where actions can be manipulated by buttons or with a mouse. With two of the five senses being used: sight and sound. 3D images are rendered allowing users the opportunity to explore interactively with the world portrayed in front of them.
An example of VR is the Oculus. This is a headset that is worn where users are presented with a wrap-around view of the environment put in front of them. Along with headphones to truly feel immersive. This is usually used in gaming.
All of these are expected to benefit to the introduction of 5G. With data being able to be sent out almost instantaneously, machines will be able to so much more with that kind of capability presented to them.
What Are The Benefits For Business?
Businesses can be expected to see great benefits for the introduction of 5G. Along with faster speeds and lower latency. There will also be greater capacity for data, more reliability with networks, flexibility and improved battery life of devices connected.
The mobile phone is expected to become a device that humans will depend on. Much like electricity and vehicles. 5G will finally take mobile devices into a new era of use, having a lasting impact on the economy and a great number of industries.
Productivity and Costs
Businesses will expect to see an increase in productivity. With faster speeds comes more efficiency when communicating within the business. Also when it comes to completing tasks with lower latency, data will be able to travel without delays. Therefore, helping with getting the job done faster. This, in turn, will have an impact on the costs.
Moving onto costs. By shifting your business from a hardware to a software-based network. Costs will be lower as there will be lower overheads for mobile operators. These savings can then be further invested in the business and its customers.
Flexible offices and Remote Working
Buildings will eventually become ‘smart buildings’ with the introduction of 5G you can expect to see more automation within the working environment.
Radio sensors will be able to check how many people are in the building. Then the lighting will come on as soon as the first person enters the room and the last person leaves the lighting will go off. The temperature will also be controlled to make it comfortable for people inside depending on conditions outside.
CCTV will also be available in real-time, accessible from mobile devices allowing a constant security network. All of these will help to provide a more efficient, flexible, secure and cheaper working space for businesses of all sizes.
With the idea of remote working an ambition for some businesses. With 5G this idea could be a reality. Having advanced connectivity essentially means that you can do business where ever you are and be connected with the entire world.
Also with this faster and lower latency comes the possibility for those in rural areas have the same level of connectivity as those in the big cities. Opening up opportunities for new businesses to start in these areas.
AR and VR Integrations
The possibilities with AR and VR are endless. Linking to the benefits of remote working. AR and VR can also help when it comes to keeping businesses and employees connected.
By creating a remote meeting that will make you feel as if you are in the same room as the people you are talking. Even when they could be on a completely different continent. This cuts out the stuffiness and still slightly awkwardness of conference calls, that can be easily cut off.
With the AR and VR industry expected to rise by billions of pounds. It is important that these applications also integrate themselves with the various industries that might benefit from them.
An example of this could be in the future we might see doctors and surgeons being taught via a virtual surgery room. Where they will still feel immersive and engaged but there would be less human error or intervention.
Also, we could expect to see the future of online shopping taking full advantage of AR and VR. Changing the way business owners help customers consume what they are trying to sell.
5G is inevitable for our future. As business owners, the time is now to start making preparations for when 5G is eventually rolled out globally. With all that was mentioned in this article regarding the benefits. It is only wise business owners, large and small, to take the opportunity to capitalize on these rewards, rather than be left behind.
5G is expected to be completely rolled out by 2022.