How 5G Will Disrupt and Spur AV Technology

27 Jun 2018 | Interactive Technology, Networks

5G Remote Collaboration

5G is coming. It was the star of the show at Mobile World Congress in February. Several companies debuted products, systems and architecture that will support the 5G network. It will disrupt several aspects of the commercial world and our own personal technology. Are you ready for AV integration and 5G?


Buckle Up – AV Needs Will Only Increase w/ 5G

A true river runner knows what Class 5 rapids mean–they mean a wild and exhilarating ride! 5G holds the same promise. As an AV Integrator, this is the kind of speed you live for. And just like the world needs guides to take most of us down Class 5 rapids–AV needs will only increase with 5G in the workplace, and your guidance will be essential. With this in mind, here are some things to keep in mind about 5G.


Built for Speed

Device speeds will be much faster. Here’s a bit of what to expect in the new 5G networked environment: “Thanks to sub-millisecond air latency, the network will feel instantly responsive while simultaneously supporting ten times as many devices at significantly lower power consumption profiles.” In recent years we’ve been edging ever closer to the 5G reality. We’ve seen the validation of core mobility technologies and witnessed demonstrations of multi-Gbps data rates and low-latency performance. These advances are just a taste of what’s to come with 5G.


Is 5G Really that Promising?

How is 5G wireless different from other technologies that were full of promise but failed to deliver? During the 1970s, there was much excitement about end-to-end digital phone networks based on integrated services digital network (ISDN.) Videophones did not exactly become ubiquitous in those days. And remember Teledesic? I don’t. This was a collaboration between Bill Gates, a Saudi prince and a mobile phone magnate, and it went absolutely nowhere. From such failures, lessons can be learned.


5G and Remote Collaboration

In a recent article on ComputerWorld, Ira Brodsky puts it this way: “Technologists learned that there are multiple pieces to the telecommuting and remote collaboration puzzles. The networks, end user devices, and applications must all work together to deliver the right user experiences at the right prices.”

Tech developers have made meaningful progress in improving AV solutions. The Meeting Owl is Owl Labs’ flagship product that enhances the conferencing experience with a 360-degree intelligent camera and eight omnidirectional microphones, enabling participants to see a panoramic view of the entire conference room. If supported by 5G, solutions of this nature could bring remote collaboration to the next level.

So as the promise of 5G is delivered, AV Integration will have a crucial role in bringing the pieces of the puzzle together. With travel and remote work being done more and more, audio and video conferencing is becoming a much more regular occurrence in the workplace. 5G is making unified communication in general more seamless. With 5G, team members can now use mobile devices to join the meeting – with lag times and connection issues becoming less and less of an issue.

5G technology means strong connections literally on the go. You won’t have to run around looking for network connections. The connection will travel with you along cell towers. This can make services available in areas where fast networks have not existed before, so collaboration can happen most anywhere.

Utilising 5G networks, the wide-ranging benefits of AR and VR applications, it will become clear that we have up to this point, just been scratching the surface. Imagine, for instance, architects being able to quickly and easily project a 3D rendering at a conference table in the course of a meeting.


AV Integrators as Guides through the 5G Rapids

What can AV Integrators do to make the 5G experience live up to the hype? One major task will be proactive monitoring and testing to encourage employee utilisation of available AV tools. Existing technology like video conferencing will be faster and experience far less latency. Emerging technologies like AR and VR will flourish. AV integrators will have ample opportunity to bring these enhanced capacities and new experiences to employees’ attention. Protocols for monitoring applications that get the most use, testing to see what works and what doesn’t, and education to show people the way. These will be the tasks at hand as 5G becomes a reality.