Advent of 5G technology in India

Internet Cable

What is the one thing that humans in the modern era cannot live without? The answer is internet or should I say – Fast Internet!

Yes, you read that right. Probably after the basic needs of food water and shelter, the internet has become the most crucial thing to human existence in the 21t century. People cannot stay detached from the world (electronically and digitally) for long. We have numerous methods for staying connected such as smartphones, laptops, desktops, smart wearables, Internet of Things devices and other smart technologies. Out of all these the smartphones are the easiest to use and can perform various functions. A smartphone eliminates the use of over 10 traditional technologies such as camera, music player, recorder, typewriter etc.

Mega-events or conferences are good ways to bring together various stakeholders in the technology sector. India Mobile Congress (IMC) is one such conference. IMC 2018 is being held in the country capital. A lot has been seen and said about this South Asian Giant’s telecom and technology industries. It is one the fastest growing in the world and the sheer volume is alluring enough for the global payers. India is known to be a huge market due to its population over a billion. This means that there are over a billion potential customers.

The global giants such as Samsung, Huawei, Qualcomm and so on are all locking their horns in the IMC, 2018 in New Delhi to present their respective cases for the use of 5G networks. Starting from communications to healthcare and from sports to farming, the upcoming revolutionary telecom technology is going to be a life-changing experience for most of the population.

Amidst all the positivity and hopes, some critics are also questioning the need for this high-speed internet when 4G is proving to be enough for the country. It can be seen that the youth is stuck to their screens, be it smartphones or their laptops. Even the families are not spared as many of them can be seen glued to their smart televisions, which use the internet, unlike the older versions. The consumption of internet in the country has multiplied manifolds in just the last two years and the credit goes to Reliance Jio’s disruptive business strategy and negligible data rates. People are also calling a lot more than ever before due to the almost negligible voice charges. All of this is possible due to the availability of the 4G technology in India. Jio is the only telecom player in India currently that has the hardware ready for deploying 5G right away. In fact, Jio had been ready since long, even before other companies thought of upgrading to the 5G technologies.

The 2nd edition of the IMC is being organized in New Delhi’s Aerocity. In the first edition that took place last year, the country was taken away by storm by the sheer number of innovative ideas that surfaced through the IMC. It helped project India’s image as a technologically advanced nation that believes in the technological developments. It should be understood that in the modern world, technology is the lifeline of any economy and the more a country is technologically advanced, the further ahead it will be from its competitors. The current government also has been supportive of the tech-based business coming into India by easing the barriers to business. India’s ease of doing business rankings has improved a lot and Indian jumped numerous places in the past couple of years. This year’s IMC has seen many great companies sponsoring the event in various ways.

Some of the major developments witnessed in this year’s IMC have been from Huawei. They are the largest telecom gear manufacturers in the world and majority of the Indian telecom service providers are dependent on them for the towers and other equipment. In the IMC, they collaborated with Airtel to conduct an “AR (augmented reality) Holographic Communication” using 5G New Radio (NR) non-standalone architecture (NSA), displaying their achievements in 5G technologies. This is a new area for the Indian market to step in, as it will change the way we communicate for good. For very long, the technological advancements have been limited to screens, microphones and speakers. With the help of ultra-fast internet through 5G, we can now move into the era of holographic communications. Huawei also has developed their in-house processors called the Kirin Chipset. The company claims that this is the first AI enabled chipset. These chipsets power most of the Huawei and its sub-brand Honor phones.

Drones are another major piece of technology that will be greatly benefitted with the advent of 5G. Drones have numerous use cases in India starting from the agriculture to rescue operations in natural calamities. One such case was demonstrated in the IMC by Samsung’ booth. has a UHD 4K camera attached to it and provided a farmer is rich enough, he can fly the drone to inspect the crop health on a macro level and even spray fertilisers without having to go around the entire field manually. The drone works on 5G to leverage the lower latency, making the controls almost seamless for the farmer. It also leverages 5G’s beam forming ability to stay connected in real time while in the air. There are also temperature and soil sensors that work as narrow-band IoT (NB-IoT) devices.

5G also has its various other uses such as in the healthcare sector. This is one such area where technology is required to save lives. In many rural places, proper healthcare and doctors cannot reach and this where the mobile vans can reach with their 5G enables screen and communication devices. They can connect with the doctors sitting the cities and diagnosis can be done via video conferencing or even holographic technologies as discussed earlier. These are the possibilities that 5G technologies can bring to the modern civilization and the tech companies are sweating it out in the Indian market in order to grab the huge opportunities.

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