5G To Bring Holograms, Revive Usage-Based Fees: Telecoms

The fifth generation of mobile network will introduce a wide variety of new consumer-facing technologies such as holograms but is also likely to revive some business practices that are presently considered to be outdated, wireless industry veterans in South Korea believe. While the Far Eastern country is presently spearheading the 5G push, its telecom giants are concerned about the commercial prospects of early commercial implementations, which is why they're said to be considering per-usage fees instead of traditional wireless plans. Hana Financial Investment is predicting that the limited availability of 5G-enabled smartphones will also significantly reduce the number of potential 5G customers in the early days of the technology, driving mobile service providers to charge for 5G connections based on the volume of consumed data instead of opting for flat rates.

The first commercial 5G networks in South Korea are expected to be between 40 and 50 times faster than the current limits of 4G LTE solutions. That performance increase may be enough to convince early adopters of 5G phones to agree to per-usage fees instead of flat-rate ones, some industry watchers believe. Besides holograms, ultra-high definition streaming is also expected to take off with the introduction of commercial 5G and serve as another one of its early selling points. The U.S. wireless industry is only set to start large-scale 5G deployment next year and no concrete remarks on business models and general monetization have yet been publicly provided by any mobile service provider in the country.

Holograms are expected to be one of the earliest new applications of 5G, with the world's first holographic call already being conducted over an experimental fifth-generation network more than a year ago as part of a trial conducted by Verizon and KT. The Korean wireless industry is particularly intrigued with the technology that has recently been pursued by virtually all major players in the country, with SK Telecom also showcasing it earlier this year at the 2018 edition of Barcelona, Spain-based Mobile World Congress.

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