5G technology — the latest generation of network connectivity — has everyone looking forward to these benefits:
- Faster connection speeds – download a movie in mere seconds
- Reduced network latency – experience nearly unnoticeable network lag, if any
- Greater network bandwidth – never lose network service, even when you enter a stadium full of network users
This all means that 5G dramatically increases our capacity to transmit data. 5G can be compared to a new city water delivery system. Compared to the old system, the new one has pipes that are much larger. If water treatment plants remain the same, then these plants might not be able to meet the increased demand for water.
In the same manner, 5G will increase our demand for data, which means that cloud service providers (CSPs) must make the necessary adjustments to meet this demand.
Clouds may need to increase their processing power
The three cases below illustrate how the cloud will have to be able to handle much more data than it does now:
The number of installed IoT devices will explode
Greater capacity for interconnectivity will mean that the market for connected devices will boom. In fact, according to Statista, the number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices is expected to reach 30.9 billion units by 2025, a huge leap from the 13.8 billion unit projection for 2021. Machines loaded with all sorts of sensors will generate vast amounts of data for processing. Additionally, these devices will communicate more with one another and perform tasks with little to no human intervention, thanks to programs powered by machine learning. All of this will require immense data processing power.
Apps will require more power
Since app developers won’t have to worry about network constraints, they’ll build features and capabilities that will digest and generate as much data as needed to realize the full potential of their apps.
Business intelligence services will boom
Companies will want to collect as much data as they can about their customers, markets, and processes so that they can always optimize their costs and investments. Business intelligence service providers will cater to companies of all sizes — and the former will rely on cloud computing to power their services.
Alternatively, much processing may be offloaded to the edge
Though 5G does speed up connections, making data travel long distances to data centers still takes more time than if it was processed as close as possible to where it was generated. Such time savings are critical for programs that make split-second decisions, such as the ones that control self-driving vehicles.
In this manner, edge computing is for processing time-sensitive data, whereas the cloud can be dedicated to processing data that is not time-driven (such as meta-data).
5G will increase our demand for data, which means that cloud service providers (CSPs) must make the necessary adjustments to meet this demand.
Clouds will need much more storage space
As mentioned earlier, connected devices will proliferate. This means that CSPs will have to build more storage capacity for all of the data these devices will produce.
Moreover, more space will be needed for backups, too. Cloud customers must bear their cloud storage costs in mind, especially when demand for space outstrips supply and drives prices up.
Clouds will need more security
If 5G dramatically speeds up connections, then it’s not hard to imagine cybercriminals being able to exfiltrate data faster once they get into your cloud environment. Additionally, since more time-sensitive data will be produced, data security incident response times must become shorter. All in all, cloud providers and cloud customers must work hard to close their security gaps.
In fact, tech giants such as Microsoft and Google are offering their cloud customers ancillary cloud security services to help the latter keep their data safe while they make the most of the cloud. We may see more cloud security developments from CSPs and third parties alike once the deployment of 5G comes into full swing.
TL;DR: 5G technology will require more from CSPs
5G will open the floodgates of data. Is your cloud environment ready for this eventuality? To properly leverage 5G and the cloud, turn to In-Touch IT. Contact us to schedule a consultation with our IT experts.