Previous generations of mobile connectivity have each made incremental progress in terms of how we live and work. And now, just two years after 4G became the dominant technology globally, and while we are still scratching the surface of all that 5G can achieve, I am excited by its potential to fundamentally transform how all industries operate.
When combined with technologies like AI, IoT, and Big Data, the opportunities are limitless, enabling enterprise to create a new generation of connected cars, workshops, factories and warehouses. The benefit is that information is constantly exchanged to optimise the production process and detect the risk of breakdowns or errors.
It is my firm belief that these new technologies should benefit the many, not the few. That’s why we have a collective responsibility to upskill the workforces of today and tomorrow. By ensuring every person is able to thrive in an increasingly digital economy, we will be able to ensure technologies like 5G reach their full potential.
Looking to the future, mobile technology will remain critical to our recovery. This year whole industries, organisations of all kinds and people in every country have taken an accelerated step into the future – a future made possible by digital transformation. For industry sectors like manufacturing, healthcare and transport, recovery is dependent on finding efficiencies. 5G is the key enabling technology for Industry 4.0 and one of the strongest building blocks for a reinforced economy.
Currently in a nascent stage, 5G momentum is building. By the end of this year, 5G will reach 1 in every 5 people globally. And that reach will be even greater from next year, as mobile operators are expected to invest around US$1.1 trillion in mobile CAPEX worldwide from now until 2025, of which 80% will be in 5G.
Enthusiasm is very strong in China. By 2025, 5G will account for almost half of mobile connections here.
At MWC Shanghai, we are releasing a series of 5G use cases for enterprise. GSMA’s 5G Innovation and Investment Group here in China – called 5G IN – is very active as it brings together mobile operators and investors to seek new pioneers and business models.
With its investment, large population and the availability of local devices, China will continue to dominate global 5G connections, and, by 2025, China will account for nearly half of 5G connections, globally.
There is no doubt that 5G will be a key pillar of the era of intelligent connectivity, supporting economic growth, transforming business, delivering innovative new services, and unlocking the power of connectivity so that people, industry, and society thrive.
China has just entered the Year of the Ox, which symbolises strength and determination and that’s something we could all do with a lot of that right now.
About the Author
Stephanie Habib-Lynch, CMO, GSMA
Stephanie is a global leader in the technology sector, with over 25 years of experience. As Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at the GSMA, she is responsible for driving the Association’s global marketing and communications strategy to support and enable business success for the GSMA and its members.
Stephanie holds an M.S degree in Entrepreneurial Finance, Strategic Cost Accounting from Babson F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business and a B.S. degree in Finance from Rutgers University.