Partnership and ecosystem essential to usher in 5G era
Ken Hu, deputy chair and current CEO of Huawei Technologies, says 5G technology will allow tech companies like his to bring better services to their customers.
"Actually 5G is the technology which can provide us much faster speed, much lower latency, and much more connectivity than our existing 4G technology. So that would help us to build a much better user experience for our existing mobile service. That will help us to generate many new services," says Ken Hu.
However, Ken Hu admits there are still challenges, including the high development cost of 5G technology.
He says while research costs are starting to ease up, the technology is still going to require government support for things such as infrastucture development and other high-cost areas.
"So we hope that the government can help to supply more sufficient spectrum resource to the market in a more reasonable mechanism with the lower cost. That will greatly help the industry to lower the end-to-end cost of the 5G service. And also we will welcome more supportive policies to help carriers to deploy more fiber optic underground with much lower cost."
A whitepaper from Huawei has suggested 5G technology is going to create significant advancements in areas such as virtual reality, smart cars, manufacturing, health care and smart cities.
Sihan Bo Chen is the head of Global Systems for the Mobile Communication Association in Greater China.
She says other sectors outside the tech industry should also be investing in 5G technology.
"5G has a different character in it, which enables the network to be sliced and like tailor-made to different industries' needs. So it is not just operators' business. Let's all work together to think carefully and form more partnerships between operators, between vendors, between our vertical partners. It is happening, but we still need to encourage more," says Sihan Bo Chen.
Mikael Back, the head of business strategies for Erricson, says despite the challenges, 5G technology is where the future of communication is headed.
"The mobile system has never been stronger, I would say. But the main challenge for us right now will be to bring other ecosystems along, driven by the core industries, the manufacturing industry. A lot of industries, they have been bringing out their own very strong ecosystems over a long time."
An industry report is suggesting there will be 1.3 billion mobile 5G connections by 2025.
China is forecast to become the world's largest 5G market, with 430 million 5G connections over the coming 7-years.