Will 5G be the answer to the current network congestion?
One of the most exciting selling points of 5G is the release of congestion currently experienced on the 4G network. Add to that unparalleled internet speeds and data transfers, the new mobile internet technology is beaming with potential waiting to be scaled. Anyone on the 4G network can attest to the congestion with untimely pauses and experiencing various speeds of downloads across the day. You aren’t the only one wishing the internet speed at 3 AM would replace the slow connection at lunch hour. Thus, the rise of 5G means we wouldn’t have to leave a HD movie to load for thirty minutes before streaming. In fact, a connection on 5G means streaming a movie while someone else on the same connection plays Fortnite without either one experiencing any interruptions because 5G promises unmatched speeds.
Whilst the majority of those working to scale 5G boasts the broadband capacity, others are hesitant. In fact, Allot, a global provider of innovative network intelligence has reported that 5G may not alleviate the congestion currently experienced on the 4G/LTE network. In their recent report on telecom trends, the company asserted the “if you build it, they will come” model. This model is comparable to infrastructure projects. For example, if a new highway opens up to release traffic congestion, more people will use their vehicles on the road. By the same token, introducing a faster broadband connection means that more people will get on the network, thereby cancelling the possibility of reducing the congestion on it. The report suggests that congestion on the network will continue to be a problem and that will significantly dampen a users’ QoE (quality of experience) on 5G.
However, it’s important to note that while some CSP’s are exhibiting concern over congestion issues on the 5G broadband, others are positive that it will release the current frustration experienced by users across the board regardless of whether or not more users get on the network. In fact, OpenSignal’s report of the 4G network illustrates that in the 77 countries studied, 4G speeds range between 31.2Mbps and 5.8Mpbs at the fastest hour of the day. On the flip side, 5G will offer solutions to everyday latency issues as its spectrum will be much more efficient. 5G will facilitate a better broadband experience as the frequency on the spectrum used will be much higher. As such, they have a greater capacity to accommodate internet usage as opposed to its LTE counterparts.
Yes, the introduction of 5G at scale will also see an increase in the number of devices on the network, which, by nature, will raise the level of congestion. However, it’s important to note that that the 5G released in 2020 will be significantly different than the broadband connection we will witness in 10 year’s time. As a result, although the number of devices will increase, so will the broadband service to accommodate said rise. In doing so, 5G will not only help in providing consistent broadband services across the day, but it will provide a ‘blanket of capacity’ wherein the daily issue of congestion will be elevated due to the high bandwidth and high-frequency spectrum bands. Additionally, it can help ease congestion in populated areas such as a stadium or even in rush hour in the city. As such, the mmWave utilised on the 5G-only spectrum will be ideal for cities due to their short distance and high capacity. Moreover, later reiterations of 5G will allow for data-driven, data-consumed industries to nurture across the globe and all such devices to be working simultaneously, efficiently and uninterruptedly across the network.
Mass market adoption for 5G is expected to take place by 2022 with the APAC region pushing hard to implement the benefits. As such, being in the know is imperative not only as individual users but as organisations, as well. As a business, scaling in years to come means taking the lead with 5G. In order to take the lead in 5G deployment, partner with VIAVI, the driving force behind 5G since 2013. Our 5G test and verification solutions deliver essential visibility for 5G end-to-end programmable and dynamic networks. Test, enable and assure your business on 5G and optimise how you move forward with the experts in the industry.