5G internet of things (IoT) connections are expected to explode in the next five years, reaching 116 million globally by 2026, up from just 17 million in 2023, according to new data from Juniper Research.
Juniper said the main driving force of these connections will be found in the healthcare sector and smart city services that will drive 1,100% growth over the next three years.
5G adoption will also see high growth across key sectors including:
- Automotive industry
- Mobile broadband
- Smart homes
The main reason 5G is being used in the IoT market is due to the technology’s low latency and high bandwidth that 5G affords, which allows for a significant reduction in the time it takes for communications to be sent between devices and applications.
According to Juniper, there will be more than 60 million 5G smart city connections globally and urban planners should leverage 5G connectivity as high-bandwidth gateways.
The Juniper research found that the monitoring of transportation networks includes road and rail networks, which will be part of the key services that require 5G-enabled high-bandwidth cellular connectivity.
In healthcare, 5G-based services are needed to modernize or expand services, particularly those that started during the COVID-19 pandemic. These include telemedicine, connected ambulances and emergency services, and real-time remote monitoring.
“5G will enable more efficient and dynamic healthcare provision that was not feasible with 4G or Wi-Fi,” said Olivia Williams, researcher at Juniper. “However, healthcare providers must first implement 5G in areas which provide a strong return on investment; most notably connected emergency services.”