As the world continues to embrace 5G technology, its impact on commercial aviation in 2022 appears to be immense. Companies are rapidly transitioning to 5G networks due to their potential benefits and ability to improve operations. Building off the foundations of 4G capabilities, 5G technology enables far more devices to connect at faster speeds with low latencies. This is essential for applications that require real-time data visibility and automation for tasks like data analysis and improved operational efficiency.
Though companies face increased costs associated with investments in software, hardware and employee training, doing so could potentially yield significant returns in terms of reduced costs and new revenue streams. In addition, Industry 4.0 and IIoT developments are also pushing the need for 5G networks — both geographically and functionally. Many countries have already invested in Chinese equipment for their deployments; however, potential security threats have led to a ban on this equipment which requires additional investment from those countries.
The higher frequencies used by 5G networks also limit transfer over long distances as they require multiple antennas; while they may suffice within industrial plants or processes, they are not suitable for long-distance data travel. Additionally, traditional manufacturers may be hesitant to incorporate new technologies due to the fear of costs associated with learning curves — particularly those related to software investments, hardware infrastructure set-up and employee training requirements — thus creating an additional obstacle in their path toward transition.
It is clear that the potential benefits of 5G coupled with other emerging technologies such as edge computing, cloud computing and artificial intelligence present an opportunity for exponential leaps in growth across multiple industries — particularly in commercial aviation — as early adopters gain unparalleled competitive advantages over their peers who fail to adopt these transformative technologies by 2022 or thereafter. While this transition certainly comes with its challenges and obstacles, it is evident that there will be no shortage of returns if done right — making it a worthwhile endeavor for any company looking forward into the future development of its business operations.