Our Vision of a Future with 5G

Mr. Gota Iwanami, Chairman, Service & Application Committee

5G represents a major change for application developers with its huge increase in digital architecture. Until now devices such as PCs, smartphones, and tablets have been the target for developers. In the age of 5G, however, everyday objects will become the main focus. Once the world was changed by the Walkman, a time when users were provided new value by new forms of hardware. Now, new value will be provided by software, through the digital architecture such as the iPod and iPhone, whereby apps will add value to the daily lives of consumers.

Even in digital architecture, input, output, operations, and memory are all derived from the characteristics of specific devices or objects. The structure of the digital architecture, however, will enable the network to achieve ultra-high capacity, massive amounts of connections, ultra-low latency, and energy savings. The network will also handle rapid diversification as well, ensuring even the smallest smart devices are carry able out their tasks. In addition, the network will increase the ability for data analysis to occur in real time in order to be used by individual applications. With these capabilities, the digital architecture of 5G will bring about a wave of new apps with diverse uses similar to what the Cambrian Explosion did for life on Earth.

This means that the types of application we will see will also diversify. Until now, there have been messaging apps as well as those that provide information and other contents to users. With 5G, apps that are able to add value to consumer lives due to their ability to provide user’s control over objects will increase, the best example being autonomous driving vehicles. These new apps will quickly be able to see changes in the environment, and react quickly and intelligently to that new information to optimize their processes autonomously without interfering with their overall activities. Artificial Intelligence works similarly, however it has an image that cognition, control, optimization, and autonomy are all achieved exceedingly fast. These similar kinds of apps, that will evolve as they are used, are one great feature of 5G.

The mission of the Service & Application Committee is to provide this vision for a future with 5G. We are going about this concretely in the Use Scene Working Group, which is researching different industries, conducting user surveys, and designing use scenarios, and the Application Platform Working Group, which is analyzing and theorizing fixed networks, proximity communications, OS, CPUS as well as data platforms from the perspective of application development. In addition to conducting user surveys at regular intervals, we are also going to be conducting fixed point observations of usage trends.

Many people believe that 5G will bring a range of innovations to vertical industries. However, a more important question that needs to be asked is how 5G will change and how people work and live. Answering this question ties directly to future app development. Users will be offered a wide variety of new apps from a variety of fields, with the potential for creating a lifestyle unimaginable today, but the key question as to what user oriented means in this context has yet to be answered.

The progress of networks, including 5G, is an open frontier for everyone. Many different industries will have new innovations come about to their core businesses and users will become more connected with each other through 5G mobile networks. The main point of organizations like the 5GMF will be deciding on standards so that we will be able to see the near future, by allowing various industries to be able to base their prediction for what the technical foundation will be. In other words, we can take the lead in facilitating the understanding of new business opportunism. The Services and Application Committee looks forward to the participation of everyone, not only firms in the telecommunications industry, to join our work in defining the future.