• Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

In the vibrant Asia-Pacific region, a remarkable technological revolution is taking place. Telecom operators are joining forces like never before to accelerate the implementation of the fifth generation of wireless technology, also known as 5G. With the ongoing transformation of industries and societies in the digital age, these partnerships are set to transform the telecommunications industry, bringing about a new era of connectivity, innovation and economic prosperity.

Rebuilding APAC Economies

Mobile operators in the Asia-Pacific region are planning to invest US$227 billion in implementing 5G networks between 2022 and 2025. This investment will have a significant impact on various aspects, bringing new services to consumers and revolutionizing industries and manufacturing. It will drive economic growth and play a crucial role in rebuilding the economies of the region after the pandemic.

By utilizing 5G networks, cloud services, AI, big data and IoT, we can realize the full potential of a post-pandemic digital economy. GSMA projects that by 2030, 5G will contribute US$960 billion to global GDP. Industries like manufacturing, logistics and healthcare are leveraging 5G for digital transformation and automation.

Across the Asia-Pacific region, 14 major carriers have successfully rolled out 5G networks in their respective countries, including all three telecom companies in the Philippines. Although smartphones with 5G capabilities have recently been released, the full potential of 5G can only be realized by strengthening the surrounding ecosystem.

Building partnerships across various industries and functions is crucial for developing 5G services and overcoming obstacles in network management. Private wireless networks show promise for 5G applications in different industries, with the total addressable market projected to reach US$8.3 billion by 2026.

By the end of 2023, it is predicted that more telecom companies will have formed partnerships to drive adoption, following the example of Globe and DITO Telecommunity collaborating for mobile calls and SMS interconnection.

Transforming the 5G Landscape

The use of 5G technology was initiated during the pandemic and has grown steadily in its aftermath. For instance, the leading mobile operator in Thailand, Advanced Info Service (AIS), has connected hospitals using 5G technology. They have also introduced 5G-connected robots to aid in patient treatment. Similarly, in neighboring Malaysia, Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM) has installed 5G base stations at quarantine centers to swiftly exchange data with medical authorities.

Likewise, China Mobile has deployed a dedicated 5G network to support a hospital in Wuhan, a facility built in just three days. This network provides healthcare staff with rapid analysis, data collection, remote diagnosis and remote monitoring capabilities — all key functions that help them administer their needed services most effectively.

The GSMA, in collaboration with the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT), has examined and documented how Chinese operators have successfully developed various vertical use cases using 5G technology.

Despite these impressive examples, it is the logistics sector that is expected to experience the highest revenue growth in the field of 5G network slicing, according to ABI Research. This growth will be driven by various use cases, such as vision-based inspections for autonomous and remote-controlled operations, asset tracking and smart transport applications, to name a few.

For example, smart tech manufacturer RoboTechnik has leveraged 5G's low latency and partnered with China Mobile Jiangsu and Ericsson to introduce a private 5G network for a smart factory. This partnership has resulted in a 30% increase in production and a 40% reduction in labor costs in its one-year pilot period.

The Vice President of Asia Pacific and Advisory Services, Jake Saunders, who leads ABI Research’s 5G markets research division, believes that despite the uncertain economic outlook, 5G cellular coverage and innovations in the region will continue to progress. He has also stated his belief that companies and countries that implement 5G-to-business applications are likely to gain a competitive advantage.

The deployment of 5G applications tailored for enterprises has not only enhanced productivity and reduced costs; it has also been shown to reduce power consumption by improving equipment efficiency through data analytics. Furthermore, these deployments contribute to workplace safety through the use of machine vision and AI, this according to Matthias Foo, a 5G markets industry analyst at ABI Research.

The partnerships among telecom operators in the Asia-Pacific region are a significant development in the telecommunications industry. As these collaborations gain momentum, the 5G landscape will undergo a transformation, enabling connectivity across borders and benefiting industries and communities for years to come.

Pin It