The 5G network brings about a lot of the things that go to make up smart cities.
Last month I wrote about 5G for the NZ Herald’s project Auckland report. You can read the original story here: Project Auckland: How 5G will transform the city – NZ Herald.
The first part includes an interview with Matt Hitti, who looks after strategy and architecture for Vodafone. He thinks the impact will be profound.
The key is that 5G will trigger a massive change in the way organisations work with remote sensors. 5G has much greater capacity. This means it can push more data through the air while also pushing it faster. Extra capacity also means many more devices can connect to the network at the same time.
Connecting sensors to wireless networks isn’t new. Connecting many more sensors and sensors capable of much greater throughput is. Hitti says some of those sensors will be high definition video cameras.
I’ve been writing about 5G for five years now. When you get behind the obvious hype and marketing, one thing is clear: 5G is not really about mobile phones and consumers. Its focus is machine to machine connections.
The consumer aspect is largely a smoke screen. You may want 5G on your phone, but you don’t need it.
Business, on the other hand, does need 5G, not just for internet of things applications, but for tasks like remote control of cranes and building reconfigurable factories. Spark demonstrates this with its Americas Cup projects. Hitti talks of 5G applications where computing power is pushed out to the edge of networks so incoming data can be processes and given a response in real time.
This is the true 5G story and frankly it’s a lot more interesting and exciting than any consumer application. Most of the important stuff will happen out of sight in the background. And yes, it will transform the city.