New generation 5G networks

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The telecommunications industry is on verge of launching a new, fifth-generation mobile standard that will help create the foundation for the digital economy. The challenges and opportunities presented by the new standard have been widely discussed by experts, regulators and manufacturers. The focus of these discussions has been on the impact of 5G on the further adoption and penetration of digital technology, the evolution of network infrastructure, optimal public policies to support the technology and the estimated investments needed to launch the standard.

5G is a platform for new technology

5G is a new standard for wireless networks. Previous standards include 1G, 2G, 3G and 4G/ LTE. Until now, people have used wireless networks primarily on mobile devices in outdoor areas where Wi-Fi is impractical.

Wireless networking is one of the most important technology platforms today. The technology has evolved from analogue communications services provided to 11 million subscribers in 1990 into a comprehensive technology ecosystem supporting over 7.7 billion connections, including the consumer and business segments and a wide range of connected devices (IoT).

The 5G standard is expected to increase connection speeds substantially while reducing delays and improving reliability. In addition, unlike previous generations, the 5G standard will provide mobile internet capabilities as well as the potential to replace the broadband Internet services that we use in our homes.


5G capabilities

The industry is looking for ways to cash in on the launch of 5G, but it will certainly face some challenges. First, the rollout of 5G networks will require an expensive and time-intensive deployment of small network cells (consumers will likely support these changes if their needs are satisfied). Other critical objectives include bringing down the price of broadband mobile Internet while expanding provider capabilities, optimising customer service and creating opportunities for self-service and ensuring a sufficient ROI for network operators (besides access fees). Providers will have to explore the product development process from a different perspective to ensure they can monetise their products more effectively.

To benefit from the 5G standard in the near future, companies should remember a few key features of consumer behaviour:

Before 5G can be adopted, the following matters need to be addressed:

  • Evaluate the impact of launching 5G on the economy, including the capital expenditures industry players will need to make and whether they will be able to launch networks capable of supporting the development of the digital economy;
  • Select the best models and industry policies for developing 5G, including whether the existing competitive model (whereby several mobile operators independently develop their own networks) will be effective, new models operators may wish to use to develop their networks and how regulators can help facilitate the fast and effective launch of the new standard. 
PwC experts have conducted a survey that covered a whole range of 5G development issues in Russia, including:
  • The impact of the new standard on the development of innovative digital services;
  • The effects of the 5G standard and services on mobile operators’ approaches to network evolution;
  • Potential scenarios for the development of 5G networks and their impact on industry;
  • The effect of the launch of 5G on the economy as a whole as well as on the capital expenditures of industry players.

Download the survey


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Yury Pukha

Partner, Telecom, Utilities, Communication & Entertainment (TUCE) Leader, PwC Russia

Tel: +7 (495) 967 6499

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