5G connections to reach 1.4bn by 2025, growing 232pc each year

18 Aug 2017

Image: jittawit stocker/Shutterstock

5G is set to hit the mainstream in a big way in the years to come, according to new predictions from Juniper Research.

While the internet of things (IoT) is already starting to show itself in the world around us, the mass adoption of a 5G standard of connectivity is set to usher in a new age of possibilities when it comes to data and communication.

Now, a new market analysis published by Juniper Research suggests that, as the technology enters the mainstream in the next two years, an explosive growth in the number of connections will occur.

By its estimates, there will be a total of 1.4bn connections by the time 2025 rolls around, and, in that period, the annual growth is expected to be 232pc, starting from 1m connections in 2019.

However, Juniper’s research warned that, to be successful, 5G fixed wireless broadband would need to meet expectations in real-world scenarios to compete with fibre broadband.

Three countries have been identified as the world leaders in 5G technology, including the US, China and Japan.

By 2025, these three countries are set to total 55pc of all 5G connections, with the US alone set to account for more than 30pc of 5G IoT connections.

“Operators and vendors must test their networks in a real-world environment at scale, ensuring speeds can compete with fibre services,” said research author Sam Barker.

“Networks that can deliver the highest speeds and greatest reliability will command the highest average revenue per customer, hastening an operator’s return on 5G investment.”

Australian clean energy group leads $10m investment in IoT vendor

The Australian government’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) is looking to tap into IoT technology to monitor the country’s emissions across vast distances.

According to ZDNet, the CEFC has invested $10m in IoT network vendor Thinxtra as part of the Sydney-based company’s $20m Series B funding round.

The vendor has already begun licensing Sigfox’s low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) technology, which currently covers 70pc of the country, with the intention of having both Australia and New Zealand covered by the end of the year.

In a statement, CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth said: “Australia is a vast country with a scattered population. A large amount of energy is expended in physically monitoring millions of pallets, waste containers, gas canisters, farm gates, livestock and more.

“By providing a low-cost solution for tracking and monitoring these assets, we can save a huge amount of emissions.”

Gartner Hype Cycle gets on board with 5G and AI

Gartner’s Hype Cycle is the research firm’s list charting what its experts see as the technologies that will define the near future.

Its latest list shows eight new emerging technologies that it considers incredibly important. The most notable inclusions are 5G and variations of deep learning, believed to have a serious competitive advantage over the next decade.

Referencing bitcoin’s inability to stay out of the news of late, Gartner pinpoints the cryptocurrency’s underlying technology, blockchain, as another one to watch.

However, it adds that the technology in business – as a means to track transactions and actions – has yet to prove itself outside of bitcoin.

“When autonomous vehicles, AI, IoT and other emerging technologies are combined with economic trends like the sharing economy, we truly see different business designs that profoundly disrupt the market,” said Gartner’s research director, Mike Walker.

Smart locks popular with Airbnb users breaks after update

A smart lock company called LockState, which has found success with the rise of Airbnb, has received a wave of complaints after a new software update made the locks unusable – hardly an advertisement for IoT security.

According to Ars Technica, the company’s Twitter feed was flooded with comments after it had updated the locks’ software for its 6i model, but wrongly sent an update for its other 7i model.

This meant the 6i model couldn’t be locked, and, even worse, it could not receive over-the-air updates.

Up to 500 locks were believed to be affected by the update and, with no remote fix available, customers were faced with either sending the brains of the lock to LockState to get it fixed, or waiting even longer for a replacement lock.

At least in the meantime, affected users can use the standard physical lock that comes with it.

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Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic