As 5G technology is being rollout globally, it presents a humongous $30 billion opportunity for IT services companies in India.
After cloud technologies, developing 5G solutions are being expected to be the ‘next big thing‘ for IT firms. It would allow the service providers to expand their overall scope of work with their existing clients along with getting to work in sectors that have previously not been big spenders in IT.
According to industry analysts, the first and immediate opportunity surrounding 5G lies in network modernisation and creating equipment. But in the following phases wherein it is about implementing the Internet of Things aka IoT-based solutions based on 5G is where the actual gold lies.
5G is being pegged to bring the largest of opportunities for enterprises that have the ability to reimagine new products and services powered by the new technology. This, in turn, will develop new capabilities amid the intersection of various different industries.
On the same note, Kamal Bhadada, President of communication, media and information services industry group at Tata Consultancy Services mentioned how they have already started working on high-definition video conferencing and SaaS-enabled immersive applications for remote health, education and more. Needless to say, the benefits of such services cant be imagined without the existence of high-speed 5G connectivity.
Similar to TCS, Infosys is also trying to create immersive experiences by taking a slightly different approach – their core of focus is around gaming and sporting event.
According to Nitesh Bansal, Senior Vice President & Global Head of Engineering Services, Infosys, Asia-Pacific is all set to observe the highest growth rate in overall 5G during 2020-2023.
Tech Mahindra which, partnered up with Japan-based Rakuten, deploys its platform for network operators, also sees an increased opportunity beyond networks when it comes to 5G.
Currently, they are working on several pilot projects around medical devices and the modernisation of shopfloors.
“We will see 5G play a significant role in the factory of the future where the factory network will be built over 5G. There would be use cases in remote areas like oil & gas facilities where connectivity is an issue,” said Manoj Bhat, CFO, Tech Mahindra.
With the much-anticipated rollout of 5G, the IT industry expects it to turn the entire concept of ‘connectivity; into a horizontal in itself and in turn facilitate more open business models along with the cross-industry partnership between different industries.
Now, as mentioned earlier, even though 5G presents a multi-pronged opportunity, but the first phase will be focused heavily on building infrastructure as of now. The real opportunity of 5G, i.e, creating 5G-enabled solutions, is still a year or more away.
This is why many IT firms are not looking to concentrate on the first phase of opportunity but the second one. CEO of Hexaware, R Srikrishna in a statement about the same, mentioned that creating solutions will be the most sustainable phase and thus they are not focused on the initial wave.
Hexaware hopes to leverage the second phase and use it to deliver a whole new range of services but that is still a significant time away.
Now, all that being said, there still remains a lot many challenges when it comes to the rolling out of 5G such as high prices of the spectrum, non-availability of 5G in certain areas and more. How will these issues be resolve in the near future? Only time can tell. We will keep you updated on all future developments. Until then, stay tuned.