Is this the Right Time for Enterprise 5G adoption?

Enterprise 5G

While Enterprise 5G market is predicted to reach $31.7 billion by 2026, there are still no standards on price & plans and no guarantees on SLAs by vendors

There are a number of advantages 5G will bring to enterprise.

The 5G enterprise connectivity platform can enable several industries with a single network; boost cross-industry connection as well as industrial application development. Several service providers have already launched their commercial 5G services in quite a few markets, while some have announced launch plans for later in 2019 and beyond.

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According to MarketsandMarkets, the 5G enterprise market is estimated to be valued at $2.3 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $31.7 billion by 2026, at a CAGR of 54.4%. While the predictions are high, the service providers that have left businesses with many unanswered questions on the sourcing, procurement, and adoption of 5G services.

Gartner reports say, less than 45% of communications service providers (CSPs) across the World will have had launched their commercial 5G network by 2025. Experts believe that the rollout of 5G features will not be ready for another five years. Much of its potential will not even be realized until the next release expected to be finalized in 4Q19.

Currently, there is a lack of details around 5G plan structures, terms and conditions, and prices for mobile services. Hence, the enterprises acquiring proprietary 5G or early-stage 5G services might pay premium prices for limited usability. It is crucial for organizations to avoid paying a premium for 5G service as compared to 4G LTE. Business buyers must negotiate for 5G services to include in standard 4G LTE corporate device plans with no additional fee.

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A Gartner report shows that businesses that are interested in investing in 5G services and technology, want the services to come with enhanced mobile broadband, operate at low latency, and are ultra-reliable. For the CIOs who are hesitant to move to 5G, experts suggest identifying the viability of 5G-reliant use-case plans by obtaining detailed specifications on 5G performance, throughput, and endpoint capabilities, and the timelines to deliver each.

Enterprise sourcing, procurement, and vendor management leaders must ask the carriers to provide specific terms regarding current and planned coverage. The mobile service procurement teams must be provided with realistic estimates and budgets for the expected cost of 5G-reliant implementation that ensures that devices and IoT connectivity modules stay compatible. Enterprises can also ask carriers to provide current and planned rate plans, along with their approach for applying available corporate discounts to 5G purchasing. A comparison of available 4G performance with the newly available 5G performance at needed locations will help save costs.

The 5G enterprise market in APAC is predicted to grow at the highest CAGR between 2020 to 2026. This growth is attributed to the adoption of new technologies by organizations across various industries. This region has attracted significant investments and expansion opportunities.

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The key players in the 5G enterprise market include Huawei (China), Nokia Networks (Finland), Ericsson (Sweden), ZTE (China), NEC (Japan), Cisco (US), Samsung (South Korea), Fujitsu (Japan), Juniper Networks (US), AT&T (US), Verizon Communications (US), Hewlett Packard Enterprise (US), CommScope (US), and SK Telecom (South Korea).

In November 2018, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between Huawei and Telkomsel, an Indonesia-based mobile operator, to enhance innovation in flexible package services, enterprise mobile broadband (MBB) services and user experience assurance. At the same time, Nokia also announced the launch of upgraded Cloudband Infrastructure software product to develop unified, secure virtual infrastructure management software to secure 5G cloud deployments. It enables management of virtual machines and containers in the cloud to simplify the transition to the multi-vendor, cloud-native environments of the 5G era. Fujitsu Limited and Ericsson, last October, announced an agreement to deliver end-to-end 5G network solutions under a strategic partnership.

Service providers claim 5G as a critical network enabler of applications, like remote robotic surgery and autonomous vehicles. However, mobile service providers have not always guaranteed network availability and performance with service-level agreements (SLAs).

With issues being resolved or not, the 5G era is here to come as it provides low latency, and high data capacity that can create a new platform for the delivery of services.

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