With features like high speed, network slicing, and ability to support 1 million IoT devices, 5G, together with IoT, is set to revolutionize the world. All these features make the 5G network adaptable to the external environment, unlike its predecessors, which has limited network flexibilities. Now that we know the capabilities of 5G let’s check how it will revolutionize various sectors when combined with the Internet Of Things.
Around the same time that we see the emergence of Wave 3, we will also begin to see the rise of Wave 4, which will encompass the use of 5G to extend existing Low Power Wide Area(LPWA) Internet of Things (IoT) applications. These applications – and the IoT edge devices they depend on – have a wide range of requirements and use cases that 5G will address in different ways.
This fourth wave will primarily support Massive, Machine-Type Communication (mMTC) IoT use cases using (LPWA) technologies, which are designed for IoT applications that require low-cost devices, low-power usage, and a large number of connected edge devices in a given area. Examples of these types of mMTC use cases include large-scale deployments of LPWA devices (like sensors) for smart city, smart logistics, smart meter, and similar applications.
Since a software update is all that is required to take advantage of many of 5G’s enhanced capabilities for these mMTC use cases, enterprises can smoothly transition their applications from 4G to 5G when the time comes. Given this, rather than wait, enterprises should move ahead with any mMTC-type IoT application initiatives they are currently pursuing or planning – knowing that when 5G’s enhancements to LPWA become available, they will be able to quickly update their application to benefit from these enhancements.
5G will take Industry 4.0 to the next level. The extensive real-time data collected can improve quality control by identifying defects faster. The wide mobility, low latency, and high (mission-critical) reliability required in production automation and autonomous vehicle control in open-pit mining are only possible in the ultra-reliable 5G network. Also, in manufacturing setups, often radio links from traditional network layouts get blocked because of metal structures and barriers. A cellular-based positioning system deploys multiple Transmission/Reception Points (TRPs) within a facility which can interact with the machine from various directions. So, even if one path gets blocked, signals can come from other directions, creating a signal redundancy and preventing loss of communication.
All this involves the seamless transfer of an enormous amount of data through a network with minimal lag. Maintenance (both predictive and preventive) will also see higher efficiency with more data collection and lower latency.
Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and spatial computing scope will further improve with the combination of 5G and IoT. It will stimulate sophisticated medical sensors to generate more information.
For most service providers, end to end 5G infrastructure won’t be available on public networks until 2025–2030. But companies have begun building their 5G networks for specific uses and individual facilities to take advantage of the technology before the competition sets in. So, it may not be long before we see them in our everyday lives in retail stores, groceries, vehicles, and even public infrastructures.
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