5G spectrum auction
5G can be exploited to support new business models and services that require seamless interactions among multiple parties | File Photo

5G coupled with blockchain technology can open a whole new world

The 5G rollout in India is likely to begin this month and it could have a significant impact on how services are delivered to consumers and enterprises. The 5G is expected to globally redefine a range of industries such as transport, healthcare and logistics. Unlike 3G and 4G, which largely offered improvements in data transfer speeds on smartphones, 5G will allow a universe of connected devices to interact with each other.

Experts believe that 5G will be the potential enabler that leads to the widescale adoption of blockchain technology in several aspects such as trade financing, logistics, healthcare, education, etc.

Also read: 5G auction: Reliance Jio is top bidder; Adani is a distant 4th

The novel characteristics of 5G can be exploited to support new business models and services that require seamless interactions among multiple parties that may include mobile operators, enterprises, telecom providers, government regulators, and infrastructure providers. Meanwhile, blockchain has been increasingly used to register, authenticate and validate assets and transactions, govern interactions, record data and manage the identification among multiple parties, in a trusted, decentralized, and secure manner.

Complementing each other

It’s thus not just 5G enabling Blockchain. Both are complementary to each other. 5G will provide the needed infrastructure for the machine-to-machine interactions, Blockchain will ensure data reliability, and security, enabling smarter and faster value functions.

The ultimate goal is to reduce network bandwidth and make the communication between devices live. Since current devices are centralised, which means that one entity owns it, it makes it riskier for wider adoption. This is where blockchain comes into the picture, it promises decentralisation, which means nobody controls how these devices operate, and every transfer of data is recorded in a distributed ledger, giving users full control over their privacy. This wouldn’t be possible on 4G.

Huge potential in telecom

Experts say blockchain coupled with 5G has the potential to disrupt the telecom industry. One of the major challenges that the telecom industry faces today is generating bills when a user travels abroad. The international roaming charges are exorbitant, this is because there are several parties involved in ensuring that you can access mobile networks, which means for every small bit of mobile data you use, roaming charges have to be settled manually, and then a bill is generated to you. Not only is this expensive but it makes it inconvenient for Internet Service Providers (ISPs) too.

“Blockchain, which has its foundations in transparency, can prevent rising consumer costs brought on by cross-border settlements, and 5G will guarantee that international roaming and cross-border cell phone networks are compatible and effective,” The Indian Express quoted Edul Patel, CEO and co-Founder of Mudrex, a crypto investment platform.

Also read: Airtel to start 5G services rollout in Aug; inks pacts with Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung

However, one of the most interesting upgrades to the world of blockchain and crypto could be the rendering of the metaverse. The Metaverse is a concept of a 3D digital world and an evolution of the Internet into a more immersive, spatial web accessed by Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) headsets along with traditional computing devices like the PCs and smartphones we all use.

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