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Why 5G is a great opportunity for IoT systems

The testing phase of the 5G network in Italy will officially end on 31 December, which is why 2021 is considered the 'year of truth' for this new technology.

2022 will be the year where 5G can find a real wide application in all contexts of Industry 4.0, smart cities, home automation, self-driving or semi-driving vehicles etc. It is estimated that by 2025 there will be more than 76 billion 5G connected devices compared to the current 20 billion: the era of the massive IoT has just begun!

Although 5G still seems like a distant reality, the truth is that the process of testing and implementing this new network is already underway around the world and is leading to excellent results.
In the face of such innovations, you need to be prepared, so in this article we try to explore the topic and find out more about 5G.

What is massive IoT?

The concept of 5G is coupled with that of massive IoT, but what is meant by this term? Massive IoT refers to the need to connect an infinite number of devices at the same time in a 'massive' manner, without affecting the performance of the network.

In this sense, 5G offers exceptional performance. Just think that this technology is capable of supporting more than 1,000,000 connections per km2, compared to around 2,000 active users supported by 4G for the same area.

This factor is fundamental to the further development of the Internet of Things. If we think about the cities of the future, which are increasingly interconnected and capable of offering efficient services, it is easy to understand how a 5G network will become a prerequisite!

What is a specific feature of 5G?

5G is characterised by increased speed and reliability. However, the real strength of this new network is its low latency .

How many times have you performed a so-called 'speedtest' to check the performance of your network? This measurement, among other results, gives you latency and ping, but what does it mean? Although the two terms are now used synonymously, they actually refer to two completely different things: latency expresses the time interval between the moment the input arrives at the system and the moment it returns an output; "ping" expresses the measurement (expressed in milliseconds - ms) of this time interval. So? The lower the latency and ping of a network, the less time it takes to get a result, so the network will be faster!

For everyday Internet use, these values are irrelevant, but the situation changes when it comes to audio/video communication systems that require very low latency to function optimally.
Let's say that an acceptable latency/ping value is between 0-50 ms, and it is precisely in this context that 5G shows its full potential! With ping values that can be even lower than 10ms, this new technology represents a huge opportunity to develop and implement all the latest IoT technologies of the future.

Next-generation IoT devices and the influence of 5G

Technological innovations in the field of IoT, combined with the future potential of 5G, offer the chance to innovate and develop increasingly cutting-edge solutions. However, these are not utopic concepts, but technologies that already exist today and will only be able to deliver their full potential when the 5G infrastructure is truly up and running.

For example, these innovations are being applied in the medical-surgical field: the first remote surgeries are already a reality thanks to the 5G connection. The low latency of the network means that robotic arms can be controlled with extreme precision and immediacy when performing surgery.

Another technology based on the 5G network is self-driving cars, which are already on the road in some countries such as China and the US. In order to function properly and safely, these vehicles must be constantly connected to the network and be able to exchange data and information very quickly.

IoT also means artificial intelligence, but in the future it will no longer be just a few special functions in our smartphones. It will enable us to make instant translations, use maps more efficiently, and share data and information useful to all other connected users.

But IoT and 5G are two fundamental realities for the development of entire production sectors, from industry to agriculture, and this is made possible by the use of automations and robots that will make it possible to carry out and control operations that may be too risky for humans.

 

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