The 5G technology has been on the global agenda for the past 2 years. While most of the world is anticipating the deployment of 5G in their countries, the US and South Korea are already actively adopting it within their territories. There are 35 cities in the US, including NY, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., and 85 cities in South Korea that have been testing 5G since January 2020.
Smartphone manufacturers promote 5G development as well. To keep their leading positions in the market Apple Inc., Samsung, and OnePlus Technology Co., Ltd. have included the 5G technology in their iPhone 12, Samsung Galaxy, and OnePlus product lines.
According to Statista, the popularity of 5G will increase from 84 million people in 2020 to 2,451 million by 2025. This technology deployment rush isn’t surprising. 5G is expected to be a disruptive technology in many spheres, especially in the world of mobile apps. In this article, we explain the potential benefits of 5G, how the technology is changing mobile application development, and why your business needs it.
What Is 5G?
5G represents the advanced wireless network infrastructure that provides a high-speed mobile connection. Tech companies promise that 5G will be 100 times quicker than its predecessor 4G.
This dramatic speed increase means faster downloads, transferring massive amounts of data to wireless devices in real-time, and the development and implementation of such solutions as Big Data, IoT, video streaming, VR/AR, and others.
Features of 5G That Will Influence Mobile App Development
5G is a promising technology that brings revolutionary changes to mobile app development. Let’s have a closer look at 5G tech features that will introduce these changes:
- Speed will increase from 4G’s 100 Mbps to 5G’s 10 gGbps, providing a smoother wireless connection on mobile devices outside. It’ll become possible due to 5G’s higher radio frequencies that include the spectrum of 30 GHz to 300Ghz, including all the preceding 1G-4G cellular spectrums.
- Low latency, dropping from 4G’s 50 milliseconds to 5G’s one millisecond. This incredible latency decrease will mean no image delay when broadcasting competitions or other events as if their viewers are present at the scene.
- High connection density. It’s expected that 5G will be able to support one million devices per 0.38 sq. miles, while 4G can connect only 2000 devices per 0.38 sq. miles right now. This will encourage the adoption of new technologies such as IoT and Big Data for Smart Cities.
How 5G Impacts Mobile App Developers
The fifth-generation networks will enhance mobile apps’ productivity and efficiency, enabling them to provide richer user experience. Therefore, app developers will have to prepare themselves to implement new technologies in their apps that will run on 5G capacity.
Here are some examples of how 5G can impact mobile app development:
- Fast file exchange
High speeds of 5G data transfer are possible due to high-frequency airwaves in its electromagnetic spectrum. Therefore, to support data exchange with 5G, app developers will have to upgrade the existing applications or build new ones that could utilize the technology.
- Media enhanced user experience
With the rise of 5G, user interface (UI) will become a determining factor for app success among its users. App developers will be able to implement complex technologies to enhance the user experience, such as UltraHD videos, VR/AR experience, that are inaccessible with lower internet speeds.
Moreover, 5G will reduce buffer time, making UX more responsive and engaging. With the 5G technology, gamers will be able to download heavy gaming packages without the necessity to search for a nearby Wi-Fi spot.
Apps based on the 5G technology will shift the data processing tasks from mobile devices to cloud computing services. Therefore, app developers will have to learn how to use the cloud to its full capacity. Such apps won’t need any installations on devices and their processing powers will break any modern smartphone limitations.
While most part of the data processing work will be done in the cloud, mobile device hardware will be able to assume new functions and enhance the work of the existing ones that would allow the use of 5G apps. For example, workload redistribution will mean longer battery life on smartphones.
The advent of new technology means new security challenges. 5G provides faster connection among devices, their higher density per sq. mile, and heavier cloud-based solution reliance. All of this can result in easier data interception and individual device tracking.
To prevent these issues, software engineers implement data encryption and device monitoring techniques. Therefore, app developers will need to learn how to embed all these technologies into their mobile applications and ensure that they are secure and difficult to hack.
- Apps with several network connections
Another innovation app developers should draw their attention to is the necessity to build apps with multiple network connections. 5G has only started spreading around the world, therefore, in some areas mobile devices will still have to switch to 3G and 4G networks. This will ensure a stable internet connection, though complicate the work for developers.
- The rise of navigational apps
The 5G networks will spur the development of other new technologies, one of them is the Internet of things (IoT). IoT will provide better connectivity among devices and allow building Smart City systems.
Smart City is a system of connected devices that gather, process, and exchange data to enhance city infrastructure. For example, the gathered and processed data in a particular city district can be used to warn people about traffic jams, notify about gas-station locations, etc. All these things make city navigation a seamless and enjoyable experience for townspeople.
Why Adopt 5G in Business Apps
5G is a relatively young technology introduced for mass use. Businesses and app developers are only learning how to fully take the advantage of 5G. However, it’s already clear that this network has a bright future.
The 4G network is revealing some signs of ineptitude to support the connectivity demands among its users. There are many studies that prove 4G’s inability to provide high network speeds to all the users connected. 5G can easily address all these challenges and even spur faster development of other digital solutions.
Those businesses that are experimenting with the 5G technology now ensure their leading market positions in the future. The mobile industry will continue to evolve, bringing devices constructed specially for 5G. The mobile market leaders are already offering devices that are able to support the huge amounts of data created and rising customer demands.
All of this leads to an inevitable shift to 5G within the next 10 years. Therefore, businesses should start exploring the advantages of 5G and the opportunities they can get with fifth-generation network adoption.