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5G in a Nutshell: How It's Transforming Mobile Application Development

Posted by Bala Pasumarthi May 16 2021

The wait is finally over and 5G has made an impressive debut in countries like China, South Korea, Singapore, and a few states in the US. Although many are yet to experience it, preparations are in full swing for its wide-scale adoption everywhere. From large conglomerates to the average user, everyone is excited about 5G.

The 5G Network Infrastructure investments as per a forecast by Gartner are expected to reach 21.3% of the Total Wireless Infrastructure while the global 5G network infrastructure market revenue is expected to almost double up in 2020 to touch $8.1 billion.

Seamless communication, high-speed streaming, and a smooth online experience are just about on everybody's wish list. But with great technological strides, comes greater innovation. Not surprising then, 5G has plenty in store for app developers too.

Communications service providers (CSPs) are in the midst of prioritizing 5G projects aiming to build stand-alone 5G networks that operate without depending on 4G infrastructure. Explains Kosei Takiishi, senior research director at Gartner, “Early 5G adopters are driving greater competition among CSPs. In addition, governments and regulators are fostering mobile network development and betting that it will be a catalyst and multiplier for widespread economic growth across many industries.”

5G is a fast and fresh departure from its predecessor 4G. 5G promises to be a hundred times faster with a connection speed of 10 Gbps for the perfect mobile experience we have all been waiting for. Modern mobile phones have been 5G-ready for quite some time now and all top marketers offer 5G support.

5G the game-changer

5G is indeed a game-changer given the many possibilities it can now lead to. Businesses and users have both been waiting for its arrival for the higher-band frequency it can offer. Considering that new technologies are being deployed all the time and we are now living in a highly connected world, 5G is expected to take the world by storm. 

The new global wireless standard comes with an array of benefits that will benefit not just entrepreneurs and businesses but innovators and app developers too. In order to understand how it impacts application development, we need to delve deeper to understand its benefits.

So here are the top ones. 

High speed for quick data transfers

5G is all about speed and is expected to be 100X faster than 4G and we can now expect a solid jump from 200 MB/s to 1GB/s for super-fast data transfers.

China has already built the world's largest 5G high-speed mobile network as the number of users continues to grow. It boasts of 260 million 5G mobile connections and has deployed a total of 792,000 5G base stations by February end. As per a press report citing Liu Liehong, vice minister of industry and information technology, "5G standalone networks covered all prefecture-level cities across China, and the number of 5G terminal connections had reached 260 million". 

Lower latency for improved responsiveness

4G networks are slower than we would want them to be which also means they create delays in response time. 5G changes that and ensures data transfer between devices in real-time with less network interference. Decreased delays and latency can radically take the current response time of 50 milliseconds to just 1 millisecond. 

Better connection density for a robust network

If 4G can connect with around 2,000 devices within a distance of 0.38 square miles, imagine what the extent of a 5G network would be. 5G is quite the beast when it comes to power and can easily connect around 1 million or more devices. Be it app development for phones or IoT or any other platform, 5G has got you covered.

Increased capacity for a seamless connection

With better speed and connection densities, 5G boosts the capacities of organizations to ensure network traffic optimization and helps them manage usage spikes more efficiently. As devices around the world continue to work seamlessly - be it machines, mobiles, sensors, and other Internet-connected devices - 5G provides the necessary edge to devise the right app development strategies. Enterprises can now rely on 5G to align their technology initiatives with their goals.

Greater bandwidth to empower you

With shorter wavelengths and higher radio frequencies, 5G comes with greater bandwidth to do much more than its predecessors. This is definitely a boon for businesses that rely on apps to promote and sell their products.

5G also facilitates better location tracking that is a huge help for GPS-enabled, high-precision services. All in all, it unleashes greater power and potential for subscribers across the world. 

The impact

Mobile apps will enjoy greater functionality with 5G. They would be better positioned to integrate and deploy diverse technologies to ensure rich user experiences. In fact, 5G will positively impact mobile app development in more ways than we could imagine. 

Some of the most common ways will include:

  • Video apps - Live streaming was already very popular, but with 5G we will have better operational speeds to enjoy our favorite shows, concerts, movies, to name a few. through mobile apps. 

  • AR and VR-based apps - App developers will now curate out-of-the-box interfaces for specific purposes; be it a tutorial or a demo or anything that facilitates user engagement. This means gaming apps will have shorter buffering times, shopping apps will have faster checkouts, and banking apps will enable quicker transfers. Augmented reality and virtual reality will be deployed to enhance customer experiences wherever possible.

  • Applied 3D technology - As immersive technology becomes absolutely necessary, 5G-enabled apps will be used to leverage 3D printing for developing 3D models. Just about every industry benefits from an app that's fast, smooth, and superior. 5G will ensure all of this and help address the specific needs of enterprises effortlessly. 

A giant leap forward for IoT apps

App development experts often rely on customized apps to address the specific needs of enterprises. They leverage the data gathered from varied sources including IoT devices to implement machine learning algorithms. 

As per Ericsson's latest Mobility Report, 5G subscriptions will touch 3.5 billion in 2026 and 54% of total mobile data will be attributed to 5G. In 2030, IoT will connect over 50 billion devices and the sale of IoT units sold, business to business, is predicted to touch a whopping 44.8 million. 

Cloud-based applications are already on the rise and 5G will further boost their growth. App data will be stored and managed within the cloud and users will have the freedom to access and run apps without undergoing the physical limitations of a device's processing power and internal hardware. Needless to say, this will make the experience immersive as well as responsive. 

Alexa, Siri, and Google Home told us how connected devices can increase convenience and comfort in our daily lives. 5G apps however will empower us to make bigger strides towards building smarter homes and cities. 

Looking ahead

Public spaces will get smarter with apps and opportunities coming from everywhere including airports, stadiums, gardens, theme parks, recreational facilities, to name a few. An uptick in 5G initiatives is now expected which also means more and better apps for all. Then there is the wearables market that is steadily growing and expected to cross around 500 million units by 2023 globally as per an IDC report

With 5G, app developers will review UI and UX with a fresh perspective. After all, the potential of 5G is immense and it's about time we gear up for everything that it holds in store for us. Without an iota of doubt, the future is nothing but promising on the technology front.

Lead with TransformHub

TransformHub is an award-winning Global Digital Solutions company providing a full suite of digital transformation & product engineering services to enterprises, product companies & new-age startups.  

Our mission is to become a preferred partner to enterprises for growth and innovation in the digital age. TransformHub combines Strategy, Experience, and Technology at every stage of the engagement model to build human-centered digital platforms & channels. 

Our expertise lies around the 6 building blocks for Digitization - Product Engineering, Mobility, Enterprise Integrations, Data & Analytics, Cloud & DevOps, Intelligent Automation. With a large and ever-growing team of digitally ready consultants, the company helps its clients to grow and stay ahead of their competition.

Allow us to help you align your goals with fast-evolving technologies to ensure customer centricity and deliver trust. Call us at +65 9198 4440 or write to us at to request a free consultation.

Bala K Pasumarthi

Group Chief Technology Officer

TransformHub - Banking & Finance | Fintech | Insurance | Retail | Technology


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