- On 16/03/2020
The fifth-generation broadband network is quickly becoming widespread in Australia. Right now, 5G networks have been rolled out in major cities including Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Perth. 5G areas show significant performance improvements compared to 3G and 4G technologies, bringing faster speeds and more reliable connectivity. This has big implications for your trade business.
High-quality video streaming
In theory, 5G networks are capable of producing upload and download speeds of up to 10 Gbps. The typical speed of a 4G connection on the other hand, only tops out at 100 Mbps. However, it’s not just about raw speed. Switching from 4G to 5G reduces network latency from 60 milliseconds to a mere millisecond. This means it only takes an instant for information to travel from a device to the web server and back again.
Both these factors make 5G an optimal network for streaming high-definition audio and video content. Tradies can livestream from the worksite, allowing supervisors to monitor job progress from company headquarters. They can then analyse videos to improve working procedures and ensure trades are following health and safety protocols. If tradies need further training, 5G-powered devices can download online tutorial videos in 4K with minimal buffer times. Greatly reduced latency also means smoother video call quality so you can discuss job details with team members without any disruptions.
What’s more, 5G’s incredibly fast upload speeds make it easy to post professional marketing materials. For example, time-lapse and before-and-after 4K videos can be uploaded to social media to promote services and win clients.
Remote-controlled IoT devices
5G network connections will have a major influence on the popularity of Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Specifically, 5G’s reliable wireless connectivity enables tradies to control equipment remotely, which comes with distinct advantages.
For one, the ability to operate equipment using 5G connections reduces work health and safety risks. This is especially useful in construction where heavy machinery, vehicles, and heights can lead to serious accidents and injuries. By incorporating IoT technology in the worksite, tradies can still do their jobs normally from a much safer location.
Also, future 5G-compatible drones will make tradies work more efficiently. Just imagine ultra-HD video surveillance drones monitoring hard to reach places for site inspections without ever dropping signal.
Geolocation in GPS apps like Waze, Google Maps, and Apple Maps is another interesting advancement in 5G. Due to 5G’s lower latencies and increased internet bandwidth, GPS apps will become much more responsive. They can track real-time traffic patterns, weather forecasts, and safety hazards to give drivers the most optimal route to the worksite.
Equipment with built-in 5G connections will also improve logistics. When paired with geolocation, it’s possible to triangulate the exact position of equipment and check its availability. This saves you and your staff from manually tracking machines and devices, which is often the cause of operational bottlenecks.
Seamless virtual experiences
The properties of 5G may allow your trade business to tap into virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technology. VR can put tradies in a digital space where they can visualise the layout of the worksite. By adding 5G networks into the mix, VR applications offer a smoother experience and minimise motion sickness. This means planners can use VR tools for longer durations to better plan building activities.
AR adds digital elements to physical environments by using a camera on a smartphone or tablet. With 5G, this ability is enhanced. Tradies will be able to use AR apps to virtually customise floor plans and renovations before starting the job. Meanwhile, AR apps designed for inspections will show you the serviceability of heavy equipment just by pointing a camera.
Enhanced data analytics
Finally, 5G will transform data analytics. By taking advantage of 5G’s speed, you can process large data sets and distill actionable insights. For instance, 5G-enhanced data analytics can evaluate weather patterns, foot traffic, and neighbourhood activity to determine the optimal phasing of construction activities. Built-in sensors that track device status and energy usage can even be analysed to schedule maintenance or lease new equipment. This enables trade businesses to make prompt, well-informed strategies.
From bufferless video streaming to powerful geolocation, businesses must prepare for the opportunities 5G brings. It will take a while until 5G networks have full coverage in Australia, so you have time to properly research the technology.
In the meantime, consider incorporating job management software like WorkBuddy into your operations. You get powerful and easy-to-use job costing, scheduling, and project management features. Plus, when 5G is fully rolled out, these features will allow you to work even more efficiently! Request a free demo or call us today to learn more.