receives compensation from some of the companies listed on this page. Advertising Disclosure


Speed of Light: What Will a 5G World Look Like?

Nadya Khoja

As a business owner, you probably rely heavily on technology no matter what your industry of choice might be.

Digital networking is an essential component of most businesses, allowing you to stay connected to clients and customers. 

The switch from 3G to 4G has helped enable many business owners to foster these digital networks, through speedy mobile apps that let you stay connected on the go.

You can expect the eventual switch from 4G to 5G to open up even more business avenues.

Related Article: Embracing Something New: 5 Ways to Make Innovation Part of Your Business Strategy

Here are a few things that you should know about 5G so that you can be prepared to make the most of it once it arrives.

Don’t Expect to See It Until 2020

5g phone timeline

The first thing to keep in mind is that although it’s being hyped to high heaven, 5G won’t actually become a part of our lives until at least 2020. So this means that business owners have plenty of time to think about how to implement new forms of technology – you won’t have to throw out all of your current devices just yet!

It’s likely that the technology will arrive in bits and pieces as there are currently a number of tech and telecoms companies working on it, like Nokia Networks, who are leading the way with the Internet of Things

It’s thought that we’ll see the first real life demonstration of 5G at the next Winter Olympics in South Korea before it spreads to other metropolitan areas.

5G Will Be Ridiculously Fast

So why is there so much interest in 5G anyway? Well, one of the primary reasons is its speed. 

Think about the transition from 3G to 4G that we’ve already experienced, and how 4G has enabled new forms of technology and apps to thrive. Imagine this same boost in speed, except multiplied a few times. Some claim that a 5G network could be as much as 1000 times faster than existing 4G speeds, although at the moment this is still pure speculation. It’s also important to note that this 1000 times boost will be for the

It’s also important to note that this 1000 times boost will be for the networks while business customers would see a boost of anywhere from 10 to 100 times the current 4G speeds. This is still a major difference that will change how we do business in many ways.

The Rollout Will Take Some Time

Just as it will take some time to develop 5G networks, it will also take more time to roll it out all over the world. One of the major barriers to be aware of is that telecoms providers will have to work out a global standard and find higher frequency radio bands to use in order to cope with increased user demand and super fast speeds. Although in the long run business trips will be more convenient as a rollout of this global standard, it will take some time to get there.

Telecommuting Will Become More Efficient

Once it has finally been rolled out, business owners will be able to take advantage of new and improved network speeds to conduct business at a distance. You may already hire telecommuters or liaise with clients all over the world using services like Skype, in which case you know just how annoying it is when a video connection drops out! You can forget about waiting for video to buffer with 5G. In fact, you’ll even be able to take advantage of new forms of technology, like 3D holographic calls, instead of regular video chats.

Related Article: What Are the Technology Trends That Will Change the Business Landscape in 2016?

Commuting Will Be Completely Transformed as Well

For those who do choose to commute to a physical office, the whole realm of public transportation will change along with 5G speeds. The fast network speeds combined with the use of sensors will allow vehicles to communicate with one another in real-time, for a more sustainable and efficient commute.

For example, imagine taking the bus in a smart, connected city. Sensors at the bus stop can communicate with the bus, allowing the vehicle to know in advance whether anyone is waiting. Train commuters will be able to know just how many seats are vacant in a given railway car, and traffic jams can be avoided completely with better coordination. On top of that, it’s predicted that 5G will lead to self-driving cars, something which has been in the works for a long time already.

Office Buildings Will Become More Connected

Samsung Tomorrow

Once you get to your office, you’ll also be more connected to your co-workers and clients. Office appliances will be connected to one another, saving electricity and alerting you to the need for repairs before a breakdown happens. Live data can be broadcast to screens within the building, while newly constructed buildings will be able to keep better track of who’s in the building, improving security.

Marketing Can Be Fine-Tuned

With the availability of data thanks to faster networks and more connected customers, businesses will be better able to target existing clients and reach out to new ones. You may already use targeted advertising of some sort, depending on what type of niche you work in. Imagine this same concept, using an individual’s browsing habits, and extending it to include their personal habits or daily routines.

What is now seen as big data will just become regular data, and can be used to fine-tune marketing efforts to include highly specific advertisements, infographics and offers. This should be beneficial to consumers as well, who are more likely to be able to learn about offers that are actually relevant.

It Could Save You Money

If it’s not already apparent, when 5G arrives it will bring with it a wide range of new technologies that will boost productivity and efficiency in the workplace. Through all of the functions mentioned above, it should interest business owners as a way to save both time and money.

For example, you’d be able to save on electric bills with a smartly designed building that includes appliances that can turn themselves on and off according to predicted use. You’d save money on marketing efforts by being able to target customers more efficiently, and can save on staffing by working with contractors at a distance thanks to improved modes of communication.

Related Article: 5 Technology Trends That Have The Power to Change Your Business

Ushering in a new era of machine-to-machine communication, 5G will let you sync all of your devices on a level far greater than you are able to do now.

In a global business environment, this lets you stay on top of transactions in real-time, no matter where you are. Although it may be a few years away at the moment, the arrival of 5G will change how we do business both from a consumer and commercial standpoint. As the owner of a business, there are many reasons to follow along with the latest developments in this rapidly developing field.

Image Credit: Monkeybusinessimages / Getty Images
Nadya Khoja Member
Nadya Khoja is a Visual Content and Digital Marketing Specialist. She is part of the team at Venngage, an online infographic maker. Nadya has a B.A. with Specialized Honours in Devised Theatre and a Master's Degree in Digital Media with a focus on Audience Engagement and Immersive Experiences. When she has time, Nadya directs, produces and sound designs for experimental and interactive performances.