How 5G is changing Australian internet for small businesses and consumers.
Since the days of 1G, every new generation of mobile technology and internet has brought with it faster speeds and more functionality. Now, with 5G around the corner, the wireless technology promises to deliver speeds allowing you to download a 3GB file (like a HD film) in a mere matter of seconds (in contrasts to the current 4G technology taking a minute or 2)
Low latency Internet: What is it?
With 5G comes faster speeds, the ability to support 10 times the amount of connected devices, this is a massive boost for business mobility. How is this possible you ask? One of the major drivers behind the speed boost is called latency. Latency is the time it takes from sending a request to recieve a response over the internet.
5G internet may even deliver a 30th of the latency of 4G. Thus, 30 milliseconds on 4G may equate to 1-6 milliseconds on 5G (though it won’t be quite this fast in early days). The more rapid relay of information and fewer delays may lead to advances in various technologies.
For example, imagine a self-driving car that uses such low latency to collate information from its sensors to know what’s happening virtually in real-time, whilst also receiving updates on traffic and adjusting its route to alleviate the all-to-common congestion in Brisbane. Faster end-to-end transmission from the sensors to a cloud-based control system enables the car to collate information from the sensors and respond to hazards in a timely fashion.
“5G still has to adhere to the laws of physics – limited by the speed of light. However, with 5G technology, what has changed is the time it takes for data to travel from your device to the tower, through the server, and to a router to get somewhere,” a quote from Paul Milford, Networks Principal, Mobile Innovation Rollout at Telstra.
How can Telstra’s 5G low latency benefit small businesses in Brisbane?
This latency decrease means that business requiring fast response and reaction times can enjoy increased efficiency. Combine that with other recent innovations of the tech industry like big data and machine learning and the potential is astoundingly impressive.
According to a recent study on 5G for businesses “On top of the benefits for consumers, much of 5G’s value will come from enabling Australian business to become more efficient. Three-quarters of surveyed businesses say that faster, more reliable telecommunications would benefit their business.”
There’s predicted to be an even greater benefit for those in the tech industry. “Imagine a race where high-performance cars relay a huge variety of data, from braking to acceleration to wind dynamics, back to the team’s dashboards. Now imagine if all that data is relayed via 5G. In a car race when every millisecond matters, giving the team virtually real-time data would help them make in-the-moment racing decisions” says Mr Milford.
Other potential advances include off-site surgeons using surgical robotics and 5G internet to provide medical care to those in remote areas. The faster haptic feedback (virtual-feeling) may lead to more accurate outcomes.
What will it take to get there?
5G is anticipated to contribute up to $50 billion to Australia’s GDP by 2030 according to a recent report.
Telstra hopes to help ensure that Australian businesses are among the first in the world to harness the game-changing power of 5G. Telstra is leading in rolling out 5G networks, reaching a number of world and Australian firsts, and has already rolled out more than 200 5G capable sites.
The use cases for 5G will keep growing as the technology develops, and preparations for advances in emerging technologies like Internet of Things devices (IoT), AI, augmented and virtual reality, and even drones are set to benefit. All this depends on the quality of the underlying network.
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