Similar question to 5 years ago - why is 4G not good enough. What are the applications
that need more speed and capacity than 5G can deliver. Below are 5 applications that
require 5G technology.
- Video / TV Initially a simple demand, let's have high definition TV
rather than standard TV and while we are there ensure that a feature film, in
high definition, can be downloaded in a short time for off-line viewing.
Significantly a fast network such as 5G can have other advantages.
Current delivery mechanisms such as Satellite and OTA will just not deliver
the video or TV fast enough.
So it is likely that much of this video or TV demand will move to online and mobile.
This can also feed different subscription models, such as the Netflix model, or
paying for prime viewing as Sky supports. In fact, an intelligent advert driven
model will be more adaptive to the user than the current model.
Another feature of 5G is the move of services away from the core, so
suppliers could stream a single copy of live TV or cache a video nearer
to the user thus freeing up the network.
- Autonomous cars To provide autonomous cars in city centres a lot of
data has to be moved fast without lag, which is promised in 5G. Even if the
top aim of driverless cars cannot be achieved soon, more autonomous actions
will be built into cars and other vehicles. The demand for autonomous cars
has different demands from other uses of the network. 5G has the facility to
provide a virtual network that has the facilities required from this specialist
- IoT, Connected Homes and Smart Cities. There are many devices on
the market that will add some smartness to the home, including remote heating
control and security. Many of these devices work by themselves and there are
few systems that link this all together to produce a totally connected home.
5G will allow totally connected home including devices that are only just
coming on the market, smart white goods is an example. The net stage is to
link all this together for localities and then cities creating Smart Cities.
To achieve this a large re-design of smart systems are needed supported by
a fast mobile network.
- Remote Healthcare The current healthcare model requires the patient
to travel a distance to physically go to the hospital or GP; sit in a
waiting room and have a brief consultation with the health worker. A system
that has not changed for 30+ years. In many cases there is no real
requirement a physical encounter and many GP consultations or Hospital visits
can be achieved over the network. So a GP consultation can be
achieved in a car parked in a layby. These are small steps that require
a fast network. But remote surgery, remote recovery are all possibilities
requiring fast dedicated and secure communication channels that 5G can supply.
- Improved Broadband Most of the UK is connected to the Internet
via copper wires, FTTC, with a limit of around 76Mbps. To make a major change
to this via fixed wire will require FTTH, and a large investment involving
putting fibre in roads or pavements to all UK households. A different
solution, envisioned by THREE, is to use the 5G network to provide the communications
from the household to the exchange. A speed of 1Gbps is likely with 5G a
figure similar to FTTH will be able to deliver and at a fraction of the cost.