5G technologies will transform how we use networks. In this edition of Ecovis Tech Tips, we will share with you our thoughts on how 5G will impact the Chinese market

More and more mobile phones are used by the worlds community and data usage is only growing. One thing is clear, our wireless networks must be able to sustain more traffic and become faster. How do we solve this issue? 5G, the 5th generation of digital cellular technologies could be the solution.

What is 5G?

As mentioned above, 5G is the 5th generation of cellular data transmission technology. The change between 5G and 4G is very clear. 5G Networks will be way faster, more energy efficient and able to handle massive amounts of connections. Compared to 4G, 5G will permit 10 times more connections at the same time.

The infrastructure is currently being build worldwide but is still at an early stage. Commercial services offering 5G usage are thus rare. Once the infrastructure is available on a larger scale, change will occur. Many technologies will evolve and discover a new range of possibilities. From healthcare services to manufacturing industries, 5G will impact a wide range of fields. Its implications will have a strong effect on our society and economy.

How far is China with 5G technology?

In the race of innovation, major players like the USA, Europe and China are all competing to develop 5G in their respective markets. The question we ask ourselves is: How far is China and how will the emergence of 5G change the Chinese market?

According to a projection by the China Academy of Information and Communications, China´s main network providers need to invest up to 193 billion Euros between 2020 and 2025 for the expansion of 5G in China. (China Unicom, China Mobile, China Telecom). The different carriers have already pushed pre-registrations for 5G subscriptions through discounts. With already 10 million subscribers it is clear that excitement is among Chinese consumers. Besides to these strong ambitions to create a country-wide 5G network, two of the only four companies in the world that can offer end-to-end 5G technology are in China.

Huawei for instance is currently the company with the most developed 5G technology. Huawei is already one of the world’s largest network equipment providers. Despite U.S. sanctions, Huawei’s technological advancement will benefit China. If China becomes the first country to put 5G in place,  they will have direct access to its potential.

Besides Huawei, China is also home to another one of the 4 big players in 5G, ZTE (Zhongxing). As a more price sensitive Chinese telecommunications provider, ZTE will likely play a major role in the domestic and the global rise of Chinese-developed 5G equipment.

Why is 5G technology relevant for China?

Through time, the USA, England and many other global players have been ahead in the telecommunication industry. This time China is the first in line on the 5G implementation followed by the USA. (There are no U.S. end-to-end 5G equipment manufacturers.)

5G is also considered fundamental for the widespread usage of “Internet-of-Things”-devices. IoT technologies are used in a broad range of use cases, such as monitoring & surveillance, communication, autonomous driving, robotics and the collected of data for artificial intelligence development and deployment. These development of these new industries on the foundation of the 5G network will be key to ensure that China will be able to reach its economic targets.

Yet, both China and the rest of the world should remain alert about the risks involved with using 5G and IoT technologies.

Many scholars will criticize 5G for being in an immature state for being deployed. As 5G will be omnipresent in our lives, security measures should be set. If hackers can use this new surface to interfere with the connected devices, 5G usage could become a risk.

In addition, most IoT devices often lack proper security measures. Many of them don´t receive any security patches to reduce costs.

Where do we go from here?

To sum things up, 5G is an exciting technology that will enable us to use the internet in a broader way than we are today. To make it a success, countries like China are already pushing investments to develop 5G technology.

Change and Security

To make sure that this 5G dream does not turn into a nightmare, both China and other nations and their equipment vendors must take a closer look at the security mechanism of the systems they are currently busy deploying.

Need more information on how you can profit from the 5G wave and the tech boom in China? Feel free to contact Ecovis Beijing. We will be more than happy to assist you in your successful China venture.

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