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4G and 5G to coexist as industry anticipates advancements

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In Short:

4G networks will still be used alongside 5G networks until a breakthrough drives widespread 5G adoption. Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel have launched 5G, but monetization is a challenge. Fixed Wireless Access can help generate revenue. There is hope for large-scale adoption, particularly in sectors like manufacturing and healthcare. Regulatory frameworks for 5G extend to end users and entrepreneurs. Collaboration among stakeholders is key for success.


5G Coexisting with 4G Networks Amid Industry Challenges

4G networks will continue to exist alongside 5G networks for several more years as the industry eagerly awaits a breakthrough moment or a killer app that will drive widespread adoption of 5G services.

Industry Challenges and Adoption

Awareness is increasing among enterprises about evaluating and enhancing their business experiences with 5G. While Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel have launched 5G services pan India, the industry is facing challenges with monetization. There are positive signs with Fixed Wireless Access (FWA), but the path to 5G success is expected to be long.

Rahul Vatts, Chief Regulatory Officer at Bharti Airtel, mentioned that the industry needs to reach a point where the return on investment is sustainable. Currently, 4G is covering costs and is likely to continue doing so for a few more years. In Korea, only 20% of the 5G capacity has been utilized.

Monetization and Future Potential

FWA is seen as a crucial use case that may aid in the monetization of 5G. Another potential use case would be private 5G networks through network slicing. Telcos are exploring various opportunities and business models to differentiate between 4G and 5G services.

The industry is eagerly looking forward to large-scale adoption to further drive the uptake of 5G.

Utilization in Various Sectors

5G technology holds promise in various sectors including manufacturing, mining, healthcare, agriculture, electricity and distribution, and connected mobility. This technology can enhance decision-making, reduce costs, and increase revenues, providing a significant opportunity for various sectors.

Global Market Trends

The Asia Pacific region, including India, has some of the fastest-growing 5G markets. The number of 5G connections is expected to rise significantly by 2030, with many telcos globally launching or committing to launch 5G services.

R Shakya, a Senior Advisor at ITU, emphasized the need for a regulatory framework that extends beyond just telcos to end users and entrepreneurs to address concerns around traceability and ownership of IoT devices.

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