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What is 5G?

5G networks are the next generation of mobile internet connectivity, offering faster speeds and more reliable connections on smartphones and other devices than ever before.

Combining cutting-edge network technology and the very latest research, 5G should offer connections that are multitudes faster than current connections, with average download speeds of around 1GBps expected to soon be the norm.

The networks will help power a huge rise in Internet of Things technology – Technology sourced via your Internet, providing the infrastructure needed to carry huge amounts of data, allowing for a smarter and more connected world.

With development well underway and testbeds already live across the world, 5G networks are expected to launch worldwide by 2020, working alongside existing 3G and 4G technology to provide speedier connections that stay online no matter where you are.

When will 5G launch?

In the US

Verizon surprised most of the world by launching its 5G network at the start of April 2019, making it the first globally to offer the next-generation network.

In the UK

EE was the first UK carrier to launch its 5G network, going live in six cities on 30 May 2019. It's promised to bring 5G to 10 further cities by the end of 2019.

It will be followed by Vodafone on July 3, 2019, when it will launch 5G in seven cities, with a total of 19 locations covered by the end of the year.

O2 and Three have also committed to launching 5G networks in 2019, but we're yet to get a firm release date from either carrier.

Three has at least given some detail, with its 5G home broadband launching in August and its mobile proposition following later this year, and it plans to have 5G in 25 towns and cities before the end of the year.

The impact and benefits of 5G to your business

When it comes to business mobile strategies, there’s no doubt about it: 5G is one of the biggest topics of our time. Whether it’s speculation about 5G phones, news stories about network trials, or even just trying to work out exactly what the use cases of 5G will actually be, everybody is talking about this next generation connectivity.

It’s hardly surprising, 5G is set to play a key role in helping businesses thrive over the coming decade and it’s expected to power all sorts of innovations. With 5G, businesses will be set to enjoy:

  • Improved speed (and thus productivity): Faster connectivity will mean fewer disruptions, helping businesses to work more efficiently as a result
  • Ultra-reliable communications: A loss of connectivity on our personal mobiles isn’t the end of the world. For businesses, however, reliability is critical – and your workforce will become quickly frustrated if they can’t rely on the integrity of their mobile solutions. 5G is expected to be highly reliable, which will help to solve that problem
  • Lower latency and greater capacity: With an improved ability to handle applications that demand lots of data, businesses will be able to carry out more tasks at the same time with less lag

5G and Unified Communications

5G will also play a key role in your company’s Unified Communications (UC) strategy. The appeal of UC is that it can facilitate both flexible working and enhanced customer service, empowering employees to continue a conversation across any channel – no matter where they’re working from.

As this often includes data-hungry applications, it can pose challenges for employees working from mobile devices. Although 4G generally offers an adequate service for calls and video, it sometimes leads to disjointed, stilted or even awkward experiences.

With fast and reliable 5G connectivity, your staff will be able to embrace UC like never before, safe in the knowledge that their communications will be smooth. 5G could even be used for virtual reality meetings.

Get ready for 5G

The potential use cases and benefits of 5G are exciting, and mobility strategies will likely be transformed as a result. The key thing for all businesses is to stay up to date with any developments – so at Entropie, we’ll always strive to keep you informed of any changes and help you plan for the latest technology.

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