What is 5G Technology & its benefits? When will it be launched in India?

The next phase in LTE advancement is the huge proposal to transform LTE into a new 5G LTE technology aiming at managing different wireless technology; LTE, WiFi, Blue-tooth, and legacy cellular standards under one umbrella called 5G. Moreover, the new LTE advancement includes solid support for several applications that have never been supported before in any wireless technology. This includes applications like augmented and virtual reality, Internet of Things, device-to-device communication, machine type communication, carrier aggregation, dual connectivity, relay nodes, autonomous cars, mission-critical applications, industry automation and control, and many others. 5G will play an instrumental role in ensuring universal connectivity for myriad devices of very different characteristics. Extreme Mobile Broadband services will allow 5G to meet the continuing demand for high data rates and high traffic demands in the years beyond 2020. 5G will also be able to provide intelligent optimization based on services and user awareness, and will improve energy and cost efficiency by over a hundred times.

The widespread increase in video traffic and the interest in virtual reality and ultrahigh definition video streaming will create demand for data rates of the order of many Gbps. The introduction of 5G will allow wireless networks to match data rates and use cases that are currently handled by fiber access. 5G will provide users with fiber-like access data rate and “zero” latency user experience. It will be capable of connecting 100 billion devices. 5G will be able to deliver a consistent experience across a variety of scenarios including the cases of ultra-high traffic volume density, ultrahigh connection density and ultra-high mobility. 5G is expected to be a user-centric concept instead of being operator-centric as in 3G or the service-centric concept as seen for 4G. The implementation 5G is getting closer and closer and becoming a reality day by day. At this moment, the mobile industry is heavily focused on developing 5G.

Fifth generation of mobile communication systems is developed to become an all-encompassing solution to fundamentally every broadband wireless communication need of the next decade. Future communications envisage a plethora of wireless, connected, sometimes smart devices that will communicate in real time with each other. Since both the communication and electronic technologies are matured enough, machine-to-machine communication is also about to take off, placing a completely new set of demands on the wireless networks. In order to generate efficient applications for the Internet of Things (IoT) within the 5G systems, utilization of new frequency bands is needed. For 5G communications, increased channel capacity is the primary system target due to the expected peak data rates.

In April 2019, Samsung first launched a 5G smartphone with the Galaxy S10, and LG presented its smartphone V50 ThinQ 5G shortly after. As 5G comes into use and people’s understanding of it increases, it’ll be visible that its speeds differ hugely. India’s first Airtel 5G enabled music performance was presented at the 2019 India Mobile Congress. Swedish telecom gear maker Ericsson tested the first ever live 5G video call in India on mmWave on 15 October 2019. Samsung, Huawei Technologies, Oppo and Xiaomi have already launched 5G phones. MillimeterWave 5G networks are being used in North America, Japan and Korea. China has already rolled out its 5G telecom services and is set to become the global leader in the new technology. India lags behind. Although the Government of India has a vision to spread the benefits of using 5G to education, agriculture and health sectors, and 5G smartphones are all set to be launched in India very soon, the spreading of the technology seems to be very slow.

Huawei, Samsung, Vivo, Xiaomi, LG, OnePlus, Oppo, Motorola are going to launch their 5G smartphones in India. Apple, lagging much behind is also expected to sell 5G phones in 2020. The new technology is delivering a rich number of features such as connected cars, machine type communication, device-to-device communication, small cells, and relay networks. While 4G LTE will continue to advance in India before 5G becomes commercially available; ubiquitous, next generation 5G networks will support many new use cases and vertical applications that simply are not feasible to run over even the most advanced 4G LTE networks. At the very least, the data generated from various connected devices will lower the cost of delivering services. Video is a key driver of high bandwidth consumption, and it is expected that 5G will allow excellent user experience for viewing 3D and 4K formats on a mass scale. Today, the user experience for enjoying rich content like high-resolution video is limited to fixed networks and short-range wireless connectivity.

The main problem with spreading 5G technology is the same that comes with every new technology. The infrastructure is costly. India is planning to increase its 5G trials by 2020. The main objective of the 5G program is to create new markets such as smart cities, e-health, intelligent transport, education or entertainment and media. Compared with previous generations of mobile communications, 5G needs to meet extremely high-performance requirements in more diverse scenarios. 5G systems will need significantly more spectrum than today and it is hard to find enough bands. Due to the increasing numbers of mobile users demanding high-speed Internet access, public transportation vehicles like buses, trams and trains, as well as private cars, are becoming natural hotspots of mobile data communication. While the use and spreading of this new technology may be slow, but investment in the technology is worthwhile; the countries leading the 5G revolution are going to be the next tech leaders of the world. India must speed up its investment in 5G technology if it does not want to become a village with slow facilities, its cities being much behind the giant smart cities of the world such as Beijing.

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