In the USA, the wireless telecommunications industry is led by four carriers, which create 95% of the revenue in the industry. These wireless carriers rely on infrastructure that needs to be upgraded with each new iteration of technology. For this reason, the wireless telecommunications industry is heavily impacted by developments in systems and technology infrastructure, such as the transition from 4G to 5G.
What is considered to be the ‘best site today’ might not be the best site in a couple of years. As an example of this, 3G equipment needs to be located in higher places, such as mountains, while 4G requires fiber connection. Given that it’s expensive to replace the entire 3G system for 4G, small cells are the best option to substitute 3G equipment. So, what will happen to current infrastructure in the next few years with the introduction of 5G technology?
Telecom Infrastructure in USA
Wireless infrastructure will need to be upgraded to accommodate 5G technology, including cell sites. Given that 5G will operate on very high frequencies, cell towers or rooftop antennas will need to be relatively close together, as higher frequency signals don’t travel as far as lower frequencies. 5G networks will be ultra-dense on account of the capacity, coverage and latency requirements. These ultra-dense networks will have multiple access points for a given area. While this will probably translate into more cell sites springing up, others run the risk of being decommissioned, as new technology has different requirements.
When Will 5G Be Rolled Out in USA?
Globally, it’s expected that 5G rollout will start happening as early as 2018. Ovum, a market-leading research and consulting business, indicated that there will be 24 million 5G subscribers by 2021 worldwide.
What Does The Future Hold?
It’s a fact that the wireless network infrastructure market is currently in transition. Carriers seek to address increasing mobile traffic demands and the expectation of 24/7 connectivity. As more and more devices require a wireless connection to operate, technology needs to rapidly improve to accommodate these needs. 5G promises to withstand the connectivity demands of the future and current wireless infrastructure needs to be upgraded to grow hand in hand with advances in wireless technology.