With the launch of 5G in India last month, the 2022 Indian Mobile Congress (IMC) demonstrated many exciting possibilities for the high-speed network to deliver innovative use cases in India. Beyond the technology benefits, 5G can be leveraged to solve efficiency and optimization challenges and enable future growth for enterprises. To learn more about 5G business opportunities, read on.
India embarked on its “new digital universe” with the official unveiling of 5G technology by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the sixth edition of the Indian Mobile Congress (IMC), Oct. 1-4 in Pragati Maidan in New Delhi. In this blog, we share some of our key takeaways from the event organized by the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) and India’s Department of Telecommunications (DoT).
The evolution of connectivity technologies with 5G as a platform for boosting productivity and innovation was among the key themes that emerged from this India mobile conference that drew an enthusiastic response from technology service and infrastructure providers, manufacturers, industry and government officials, academia, and the public.
Shifting narrative: from explaining technology to showcasing possibilities
While the 5G benefits of increased connectivity speed, low latency, and improved reliability are now well known, the India mobile conference highlighted several 5G-enabling technologies. These include carrier integrated 5G network (low- and mid-band); open-source technologies and architectures (O-RAN); network cloudification through Software-Defined Networking (SDN), Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), and Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC); small cell 5G architecture, private 5G, network slicing, and Fixed Wireless Access (FWA).
An interesting highlight of the event was the increased emphasis on showcasing the applications of 5G. Among the possible use cases spotlighted were massive and critical Internet of Things (IoT), machine-to-machine communication, collaborative robotics, autonomous driving, vehicle edge computing, metaverse and Augmented Reality (AR) powered collaboration, predictive maintenance, remote surgery, real-time analytics and decision making, cloud-based gaming, smart cities solutions, intelligent supply chain and logistics, and smart retail.
With 5G resolving connectivity problems and other building blocks like cloud, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI/ML), and IoT now mainstream, enterprises have all the needed elements to optimize and modernize their technology landscape and capture the next wave of growth opportunities.
5G for sustainability: an emerging conversation
While 5G network equipment and components are generally expected to consume more power than the previous generation, recent equipment and software innovations aim to make products as energy efficient as possible.
Some examples of the energy-efficient technology presented at IMC included lightweight massive Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO) radios and software solutions such as traffic-aware dynamic network management solutions for energy monitoring and management that provide 5G levels of expected network performance while consuming the same amount of energy as the traditional 4G network.
5G also is expected to power the next generation of sustainability applications around Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions monitoring and management, optimal resource management, smart transport, and other uses. Its higher bandwidth will make it possible to connect large numbers of IoT devices over the Internet and enable faster decisions through increased connectivity speeds and low latency.
Turning possibilities into practicalities: the need for building a contextualized business case
While 5G offers numerous benefits, from optimization and efficiency to unlocking new growth avenues, the strategic business value needs to be clearly communicated to enterprises.
Currently, the 5G ecosystem is a bit fragmented, with different types of players offering their own strengths. For example, OEMs are focusing on improving the equipment and hardware; communication service providers are focused on increased speed and low latency; and system integrators (SIs) bring data, AI/ML, IoT, and cloud expertise.
To move to the next level, industry players need to combine 5G’s benefits of connectivity, reliability, and low latency with AI/ML, IoT, and cloud to build business use cases that add value to enterprises beyond just showcasing the possibilities.
Ecosystem players need to help enterprises realize that 5G is not only an improved wireless network technology but also a solution to their long-standing efficiency and optimization challenges that can enable their next wave of growth.
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