Despite the youth of current 5G deployments, 57% of business decision-makers said they are likely to sign up for a fifth-generation wireless service plan in the next year.
According to the new 5G Intelligence Platform from HarrisX -- a telecommunication, media and technology research company based in Washington, D.C. -- enterprises are realizing how the benefits of 5G could bolster their networks. HarrisX found that the majority of enterprises think 5G will be important when choosing a wireless service provider and that the benefits of 5G will be worth the overall price.
The 5G Intelligence Platform collects information monthly from 1,000 business decision-makers -- respondents with C-level or directorial positions with decision-making authority -- as well as 30,000 wireless consumers and 10,000 household decision-makers. The platform tracks 5G adoption and studies and compares the benefits of 5G, other 5G-related variables and their potential effects.
Overall, business decision-makers viewed 5G optimistically and indicated they strongly believe in the benefits 5G can bring to enterprises.
Benefits of 5G for industry, business decision-makers
While 88% of business decision-making respondents said they are aware of 5G, about half said they believe 5G will benefit their specific industry. Telecommunications, emergency services, transportation and healthcare industries are expected to reap the most benefits from 5G, according to respondents. These industries heavily rely on network speed and reliability, which are anticipated networking benefits of 5G technology.
Of all the respondents, business decision-makers were most in tune with 5G developments -- many said they already consider 5G to be an important factor in wireless decision-making processes, including when choosing a wireless service provider. Respondents considered Verizon and AT&T as the leading 5G service providers. The two ranked closely in the HarrisX survey platform -- 33% and 31%, respectively -- and remain neck and neck in the 5G race.
Regardless of the provider, enterprises and business decision-makers highly anticipate the promised benefits of 5G. Because of these expectations, 47% of enterprise respondents said they were willing to switch wireless service providers to ensure optimal 5G availability and coverage. More than half said they plan to sign up for a 5G wireless service by 2020.
The effect of 5G on traditional networks
Much of the hype surrounding 5G claims the technology will transform connectivity and information processing, which could affect current network infrastructures. Providers that don't offer a 5G network, for example, are in danger of losing customers, as their competitors could improve service delivery and quality of service with 5G. Among respondents, 72% said they are willing to pay more for the use of a 5G network because they believe it will be worth the price.
Increased speed topped the list of anticipated 5G benefits at 71%, followed by higher-quality streaming at 48% and greater reliability at 46%. Business decision-makers indicated they hope greater speed and reliability will facilitate wider network coverage. Only 27% of business decision-makers said they look forward to increased productivity for employees working remotely.
As 5G matures, the 5G Intelligence Platform will track these business decision-makers, in addition to household decision-makers and wireless subscribers, monthly, and it will continue to study the challenges and benefits of 5G adoption.