Femi Oshiga, Vice President of Service Providers, Middle East and Africa, shares insights: In 2019, we enter a cautious, early adoption phase of this next generation of wireless technology. A small number of users will get the first taste of 5G in specific geographic locations, using specific applications, none of which are ubiquitous or cost-optimized. Sounds glum?
It’s not. 5G is here (albeit in small doses)! All the hype and irrational exuberance of a few years ago are turning into initial pilot deployments. It’s an exciting time, especially for those of us in the trenches of 5G development. Here are some of the major trends driving 5G innovation today. Mobile network operators spend a lot of time waiting for others – waiting for power companies to bring electricity to new sites, municipal planners to approve small cell locations, and in some cases, backhaul providers to hook up metro cells. These inhibitions on agile deployment increase operator interest in indoor private networks where site access, power and backhaul already exist. 5G is an enabler for service providers and neutral hosts to deploy private networks with highly reliable indoor wireless.
The wireless future is limitless
The most newsworthy stories in wireless today are all about 5G. Technology analysts estimate that over 10 years 5G connectivity will boost the GCC economy by $269 billion with cheaper, faster internet access and the Internet of Things. Major sectors such as healthcare, transport, agriculture and finance are expected to win big from 5G rollout in the coming year. When it comes to connecting devices to the network, wireless has obviously won. Now we need to see how far 5G can take it. As fixed wireless access penetrates residential markets, and open interfaces in 5G networks promise to make new vertical markets more accessible, the possibilities are endless. This year we will see the first glimpses of 5G. But what might come in the following years is more, better, and faster. The 5G future continues to shine brightly ahead.