With preparations underway for global networks to be upgraded to 5G, this could spell the decline of traditional broadband.

This is according to a recent report published by Citi, which looks at technology disruptors and what the future will be in the digital world.

While the improvement for consumer smartphones may be slight, the report argues that commercial and industrial users are set to benefit in a way that has not yet been proven through wireless technologies in the past.

In order for widespread commercial connectivity to be achieved, 5G must be improved significantly and this is reflected in the standards set out by the International 
Telecommunications Union and developed by 3GPP.

The four areas are:

·         Lower latency – the delay between a request for information and transmission beginning could drop to ten milliseconds with 5G from the usual 50 milliseconds on 4G.
·         Device density – this could be upped to as many as one million devices per square kilometre.
·         Speed and capacity – 5G will be able to use more spectrum than networks have been able to in the past, thus bumping up its speed.
·         Dynamic spectrum access – network owners will be able to customise offerings to suit users’ needs in a way that has never been possible before.

Businesses will likely put the new technology to use in a multitude of ways, including commercial-focused video streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT).

In 2015, a study by McKinsey estimated that, by 2025, the market for IoT would be worth $4-11 trillion globally.

Here is what some of the business cases for IoT will look like:

·         Connected and autonomous vehicles – data connectivity embedded into a car could improve real-time traffic avoidance, make ride-sharing business models a possibility and provide better fleet management.
·         Smart manufacturing – using big data to optimise production techniques and processes.
·         Digital health – potential emergency health conditions could be detected and treated earlier with connected medical monitoring devices.
·         Smart cities – IoT solutions could lead to better quality of life for those who live in cities, through improved services and the conservation of natural resources.

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