The short timeline to a hefty 5G boost


David McClure
Contributor

5G technology will offer a game changing and sometimes lifesaving boost to everything from healthcare to the fashion industry.

In the episode of the Verizon Age of Trust podcast series titled ‘The 5G Boost’ InnovationAus publisher Corrie McLeod talks to Rob Le Busque, Regional Vice President, Asia Pacific at Verizon Business Group and Paul Sigaloff, Managing Director of Verizon Media about the future of media, 5G and IoT.

5G technology will take 18 to 24 months to broadly roll out in Australia which is a short timeline when it comes to enterprise and government investment and planning on how to make best use of the technology.

Organisations across Australia are already asking how they will fit 5G into their businesses and how they will use 5G to improve their products and services over the next 10 to 15 years.

Rob Le Busque Paul Sigaloff
5G and the Age of Trust: Rob Le Busque, Corrie McLeod and Paul Sigaloff

While 5G will give mobile networks a hefty boost in bandwidth, with the fastest millimetre wave spectrum offering gigabits per second speeds, the ultra-low latency promised by 5G is the killer feature that will enable everything from revolutionary telehealth services to autonomous vehicles to IoT applications.

Telcos and cloud providers are well aware of the 5G’s low latency potential and are already busy building out edge infrastructure that will help chop the round-trip time of data as it goes from devices like smartphones to the cloud for processing and back to the phone for consumption.

As Mr Le Busque puts it, 4G technology changed lives while 5G is already demonstrating it has the ability to save lives. “The work and the investment that we’re doing with first responders in the United States to help them use transformative 5g technology, to assess risks and be able to respond to emergency situations is well advanced,” he told the podcast.

“We are seeing applications using 5G technology to help doctors do not only remote diagnostics, but diagnostics involving artificial intelligence to be able to better understand risks with a patient.”

The data travel time to and from a cell tower is in the 12 to 15 milliseconds range over 4G networks. With 5G latency levels are just 2 to 3 milliseconds.

“You can’t have a fully autonomous vehicle rolling around public roads without a very robust, reliable 5G network. Milliseconds matter when an autonomous car is breaking so as not to hit a pedestrian. We’re seeing these sorts of applications emerging now and there’ll be many, many more,” said Mr Le Busque.

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) applications are set to become deeper, richer and more effective for enterprises with capital-intensive assets such as manufacturing and energy utilities.

With 5G and edge computing AR/VR apps can be used for all sorts of maintenance and repair activities. This includes apps to guide technicians and using drones for visual inspections of rail lines, bridges, or buildings with the data being pumped over 5G to advanced analytics engines that can identify potential defects or maintenance requirements.

On the media front, Paul Sigaloff said that now is the time for advertisers to have some fun and experiment with the potential of 5G powered applications. Verizon already has 5G enabled studios in Los Angeles and London and there are aspirations to build one in Sydney.

In the US, Verizon also has 5G enabled sports stadiums, with 5G and sport viewing, there’s bandwidth to bring AR apps to the experience.

“You can actually pair up your phone and start to watch the sport through your phone, and you have this augmented reality,” said Mr Sigaloff on the podcast. “You can click on the players in real time and get live stats and scores.”

Advertisers around a 5G enabled sport can offer gamified ads rather than just standard advertising. Merchandise can be bought right from your stadium seat.

In the fashion world which has been hit hard by the pandemic because catwalk fashion shows are not possible under COVID-19 lockdown regulations, 5G is coming to the rescue.  Using virtual reality apps, fashion designers can show off their wares with immersion not possible on a physical catwalk.

“I’m excited about the opportunities and bringing that sort of concept here to Australia, said Mr Sigaloff on the podcast.

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