The fifth generation of wireless network technology is scheduled to launch in 2020, which will be upon us before we can blink. As the Internet of Things (IoT) network continues to expand, it is likely that 4G will not be able to handle the load. The 5G network will become the backbone of IoT and a necessity as 4G becomes obsolete like the previous generations.
4G Network vs 5G Network Capabilities
For now, 4G is doing a bang up job of meeting our needs around the world. But, as with all technologies, it will be surpasses and soon. Once 5G is deployed, we'll all benefit from less latency, increased data capacity and expanded coverage. As the number IoT connected components and applications expand, these attributes will become invaluable to keeping the network up and running.
Is 5G necessary for the Internet of Things?
The framework to bring forward thinking ideas to fruition is not available unless 5G is in the picture. As of today, we're able to connect through various linked systems like radio frequency identification, ultra-wideband (a radio communications technology) and Bluetooth. But, to fully realize the ideals behind IoT, those connections need to be universal. 5G would provide the proper inroads for a global framework.
How 5G is better suited for the Internet of Things?
Today, 4G, and previous generations, divide available bandwidth and allocate to users only allowing that user access to their piece of the pie. With 5G and the growing network of connected components, this strategy will not be realistic. While it's not fully baked and technologists are still working to solve this bandwidth issue, it is expected that they'll be able to provide access to the network without slicing it up.
What else to expect form 5G
Self-driving cars, surgical robots, smart homes and even smart cities are all on the horizon of becoming everyday amenities. By 2020, experts predict that nearly 50 billion "things" will be connected and with that number growing by ten times by 2030, our network needs to be quite the beast. All networks prior to 5G have focused on throughput, the amount of data that can be squeezed through the system at once. The more prominent issue now is decreasing latency, ensuring that not only vast amounts of information can get through the network but that it can do so with minimal delays.
What this means for you
The general public will begin to see advanced technologies becoming readily available. Once every device or machine in IoT can reliably connect to the network, it will be reasonable to make next generation technologies mainstream. Things more familiar to us, like our personal devices, will also be changing with the introduction of 5G. They'll need to be able to surmise which data to send out and when.
With these changes will no doubt come even more interesting options for consumers. Self-driving car, anyone?