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2020: The year of 5G? Maybe Not
December 31, 2019 News


In 2020, the world will see more disruptive technologies continue to make headlines everywhere. In 2019, we witnessed disruption in many areas with Artificial Intelligence playing a big role in most of it. 2020 will most likely see AI continue to have a strong influence on tech innovations. But the biggest and probably most anticipated technology for 2020 would be 5G.


While the war on 5G service providers seem to be calming down with Huawei deciding to focus on other parts of the world, the release of 5G in most countries are expected to go ahead fully in 2020. In Southeast Asia, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam have already begun trials on 5G. In fact, Vietnam is also apparently already offering 5G services. Other ASEAN nations like Thailand and Indonesia are also catching up fast.


5G is expected to change everything once fully implemented. The speed of data transfers will be mind-blowing to many and will also be a concern for some organisations as well. While there have been studies on the benefits of 5G and the use cases that benefit most from this technology, we still won’t be able to tell how much 5G will actually benefit everyone until it’s fully implemented. Will the technology be affordable for everyone? Are manufacturing organisations prepared to fully depend on machines and automation for their workloads? And are we prepared for flying cars and autonomous vehicles? All these answers will become a reality in 2020.


At the same time, we managed to compile views and predictions from various vendors and organisations on 5G for 2020. Here’s what they had to say:


Telstra – Marjet Andriesse, Managing Director, APAC Telstra.

With Singapore’s implementation of ICT infrastructure strategy, organisations are in a prime position to capitalise on the possibilities created by 5G. By enabling better infrastructure, 5G will become a key enabler in Singapore’s transformation into a Smart Nation. Lower latency and faster speeds will continue to create massive opportunities in markets where milliseconds count. With the greater speed, strength and reliability that 5G provides, businesses will able to better manage their mission-critical data and greater workloads.


Imagine a future where fleets of drones will be used for deliveries and for search and rescue, where manufacturing and supply chains are capable of learning real-time delivering efficiency and productivity, where bank branches automatically identify customers through facial recognition and PIN numbers are a thing of the past. 5G will enable many and varied use cases across a broad range of industries.


Lenovo – Varinderjit Singh, General Manager, Lenovo Malaysia.

5G is set to be as much as 100 times faster than 4G. It’s difficult to outline all the changes we’ll see from 5G technology, but it’s evident that entire industries will be disrupted, and new ones will be launched. We’ll see businesses roll out private networks designed for manufacturing sites – enabling better employee productivity, machine efficiency and an increase in profitability. We can also expect to see doctors operate on patients miles away by controlling robotic devices and you might even be able to holoprojector into your next meeting.


Efficient IP – Nick Itta, Vice President Sales APAC, EfficientIP.

5G brings complexity for network management, introducing a new set of architecture and technologies: SDN, NFV, SDDC, SD-WAN. This increased complexity means that service providers will need to turn to smart DDI solutions to simplify network management and manage scalability.

A comprehensive, integrated view across platforms will bring enterprises a long way in managing their resources in the network. In the same way, DNS-DHCP-IPAM (DDI) will need to be integrated into automation processes for managing resources and devices across the network.

In the age of consolidation, an integrated DDI will go some way towards helping telecom providers achieve their goal of “Zero Touch” operations.


Aruba – Larry Lunetta, Vice President of Security and Wireless LAN Marketing at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company

In 2020, location services will continue to advance and serve up more meaningful, personalised experiences to users, inviting them to engage with their environment like never before. No longer just about way finding, location services will enable a new host of services based on proximity and preferences, delivering value to both the provider and the user in the form of customised offers for the user and consumer insights for the provider.


Despite the fanfare, the introduction of Wi-Fi 6 this year was met with cautious optimism, with sceptics citing that the increased bandwidth enabled by Wi-Fi 6, though impressive, will not necessarily be put to use very soon. As a result of continued Wi-Fi 6 innovation, Aruba predicts that 2020 will usher in a new swath of Wi-Fi 6-enabled services that will deliver the performance, availability and Quality of Service that is promised by technologies such as 5G. Wi-Fi 6 will be the preferred on-ramp to 5G for the majority of enterprise edge applications.


Final Say – Until 5G service providers can determine how much they are going to charge for their services, we feel the technology is still far off from being fully implemented in 2020. In fact, we feel will only say the full potential of 5G in the second half of 2020. While China has already begun their journey to 6G, we feel the 5G journey is only beginning for most countries in 2020.