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Blog

The future is 5G –

and it’s arrived

What is 5G and why should we care? 

5G is more than the number after 4G — it’s the next step in connecting the world at a speed and stability never seen before.  

You’ve heard of connected cars, smart cities, the Internet of Things, well, without 5G those can’t happen. And the launch of it will impact every aspect of Canadian life, pretty much like AI, and social media have done over the past few years.  

So whatever field you are working in — agriculture, retail, financial services, transportation, media, entertainment, energy & environment, manufacturing, security, health, and public services — now is the time to think about a 5G strategy for your organization.

What is the state of 5G in Canada today?

The federal and provincial governments are investing a lot of resources to help organizations launch 5G initiatives — and timing is key.  

5G is comprised of several technologies that incorporate previous versions of wireless mobile systems, while utilising the existing fixed network, at least initially, for wireless radio access and transport. To make the most of 5G, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) must make significant investments in their core networks, including spectrum. 

The auction for basic 5G spectrums is likely to happen in 2020. That means telecoms such as Bell, Telus, Rogers, and Videotron should be launching their 5G services very soon. But 5G is not only about telecom — it’s about how people will benefit. For example, stadiums and sporting events are places where thousands of smartphone users stream simultaneously, sharing posts, selfies, and instant replays. But such a huge volume can choke or slow the streaming. 5G will make that kind of streaming seamless. The technology will be on full display at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics: hundreds of cameras and sensors will be attached to athletes’ equipment to streamline live video, and then deployed by wireless carries in every country.

But, as Brian Lavallée, senior director of Portfolio Marketing at Ciena, points out, “The gaming industry will also have a pivotal role to play. The promise of high-speed and extremely low latency for gamers offered by 5G networks will add to an already expansive industry.” An industry that was forecast to generate revenues of $68.5 billion in 2019.  

What will the impact of 5G be?

Economically, it’s expected that 5G will generate over 4,000 jobs, including 1,800 specialized 5G jobs, over the next five years. As well, additional jobs will be created at SMEs to support 5G implementation and management. 

Equally important, 5G will lead to innovations in wireless telecommunications that will enable businesses to be more competitive. Generating and developing Canadian intellectual property is going to be vital for the Canada and Canadian businesses to be competitive internationally

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Bernard Duval

Bernard Duval

Account Manager
National

Bernard Duval is a technology transformation management consultant focusing on 5G disruptive technologies. He manages several collaborative research projects between industry and universities as part of the ENCQOR project, Canada's first pre-commercial 5G digital infrastructure corridor. The project is intended to make 5G networks accessible to Canadian businesses, researchers and universities, helping them realize its potential, promoting long-term economic growth within Canada’s innovation ecosystem. 
 

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