5 key 5G trends to watch in 2023


From artificial intelligence to the Internet of Things, we take a look at what could be fashionable in the 5G space.

Network connection technology in the city, with 5g internet networking sign
Image: SasinParaksa/Adobe Stock

5G is set to be available in almost every part of the world in the next two years, and many people, especially IT professionals, have high expectations regarding its performance. Individuals are also eager to learn about its capabilities and how it differs from previous networks. Many service providers are already rolling out 5G across countries like the U.S., U.K. and China.

SEE: From 5G to 6G: The race for innovation and disruption (TechRepublic)

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Since its initial adoption in 2019, 5G has already revolutionized the efficiency and reliability of broadband communication for consumers and enterprises. According to the Columbia Climate School, 5G will create a notable impact in the new year on various fronts, including broadband, sustainability and machine-to-machine communication. While we know this to a certain extent, we still look forward to the features that make it stand out. Here are more 5G trends to expect in 2023.

1. Stand-alone 5G

When 5G launched a few years ago, it couldn’t work independently without other networks like 4G. Early 5G rollouts were made more affordable and quicker by utilizing already-existing infrastructure, allowing communication service providers to concentrate on improving the radio access network components.

A 5G core and radio allow the 5G stand-alone network to fully utilize the capabilities of the most recent cellular technology. Wireless providers have been promoting many of the main characteristics of 5G, including ultra-low latency and complete network slicing, which are only attainable with stand-alone 5G. To provide new capabilities for their clients, operators are advancing their packet core simultaneously with their radio access technology.

2. High revenue

According to predictions from Juniper Research, 5G service revenues will reach $315 billion by 2023. This growth’s primary driver is cellular subscription upgrades to 5G networks, which makes sense given that operators either don’t charge a premium for 5G or minimize it. Researchers believe more than 600 million new subscribers are expected next year.

Because of this rapid growth, 5G services will account for 35% or more of operators’ overall revenue in 2023. Interestingly, the analyst group has predicted an economic slowdown for the following year and believes the telecoms sector will continue to be immune to macroeconomic shocks.

3. Artificial intelligence

There are many opportunities for artificial intelligence on the 5G network. Incorporating AI is one way the industry addresses the numerous complications of developing 5G networks. Over 50% of the 132 cellular companies surveyed by Ericsson claimed they planned to integrate AI into their 5G networks two years ago. The main goals of AI integration are to cut costs, improve performance and create new revenue streams.

The fundamental algorithms that power cellphones have remained the same since the 1990s, despite a size reduction. As a result, 5G systems considerably exceed power consumption and data speed expectations. Deep learning AI will significantly cut energy usage and enhance performance when old wireless methods are replaced. This strategy will create more impact than concentrating AI on network management and scheduling.

4. IoT

Even though an extensive Internet of Things fleet may operate on a 4G network, 5G introduces new technology that makes these applications considerably more viable. A vital component of these technologies is massive multiple-input multiple-output, which increases cell towers’ capacity to manage many connections concurrently.

A different kind of edge computing technology enhances relationships for devices at the system’s periphery by distributing critical network functions to the edge.

SEE: Don’t curb your enthusiasm: Trends and challenges in edge computing (TechRepublic)

More electronics attempt to connect to the same cell towers to send and receive data as IoT fleets expand and consumer device numbers rise. In the meantime, more innovative products require fast connections.

5. Cybersecurity

Many threats are predicted to come from cybersecurity in 2023. According to Verizon’s 2022 Data Breach Investigation Report, 25% of data breaches come from insiders, but 5G could change the narrative. 5G cybersecurity delivers increased network safety through international mobile subscriber identity. All traffic data is integrated, protected, encrypted and adhered to a mutual authentication procedure.

The adoption of AI and IoT can be supported by 5G security, providing a better foundation. It also uses deep packet inspection, which thoroughly examines data being transferred over a computer network. In addition, network virtualization unifies hardware and software resources into a single entity.

Countries already using 5G

Based on data from Statista, countries that have rolled out 5G in their cities are as follows:

  • China: Deployed to 356 cities.
  • United States: 296 cities have 5G.
  • The Philippines: Deployed to 98 cities.
  • South Korea: 85 cities are already using 5G.
  • Canada: Has deployed 5G to 84 cities.
  • Spain: 71 cities now use 5G.
  • Italy: Rolled out to 65 urban areas.
  • Germany: 58 cities have 5G.
  • United Kingdom: Has rolled out 5G to 57 cities.
  • Saudi Arabia: Deployed 5G to 48 urban areas.

5G in 2023 and beyond

With its wide bandwidth and ultra-low latency, 5G can access several high-value domains, such as digital twins, 3D robotic control and more, that earlier mobile communication technologies could not. This creates an entirely new market opportunity.

Various gaming, educational and industrial applications have recently been launched using 5G’s capabilities. This is just the beginning of how 5G will eventually change and speed up advancements in the automotive, engineering, manufacturing and entertainment industries and, ultimately, how we work and live.

Discover more about 5G with these articles: What is 5G? and how to navigate the current 5G and IoT threat landscape.


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