Salt and pepper. Peanut butter and jelly. Bacon and eggs. Some duos create an exquisite experience that’s otherwise unimaginable, and the same can be said of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and 5G networks.
The use cases for AI continue to grow for customers and enterprises, opening limitless possibilities that were considered pure science fiction a few decades ago. At the same time, 5G networks are becoming more widely available following its global roll out, delivering internet speed that is 10 times greater than 4G, at a fraction of the latency. Taken alone, both 5G and AI have enormous potential in their own right. However, when combined, they have the power to transform industrial technology on a huge scale.
The combination of 5G network and AI is believed to be truly transformative and holds the key ingredients for future innovations in technology.
5G Network will Expand AI Use Cases
Emerging technologies in augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR), cloud-assisted gaming, real-time language translation and image processing, remote surgery, connected drones and more, all require the delivery of consistent high-quality network connectivity, and 5G happens to provide exactly that. 5G network promises increased bandwidth, lower latency, and high-speed, which will enable a wide variety of new business models and new applications. As such, enterprises and the public sector will increasingly take advantage of 5G and AI use cases to deliver to consumers enhanced entertainment, retail, financial services, mobility, public safety, security, healthcare, education and many other connected experiences.
To achieve the ultra-low latency required for some of these AI-based tools, many of the applications that enable these new and emerging experiences and services will need to operate within the communication service provider (CSP)’s network. This new environment is often referred to as mobile-edge-cloud, which is another essential ingredient to the success of future tech innovation. These business model innovations are expected to result in intelligent devices and applications that are able to generate data like never before, thus creating a larger demand for data analytics capabilities which are more widely available to consumers compared to what is available today.
AI is making 5G Better, Both the Network & Device
Much of the talk in this field has been focused on how AI will make the 5G network better. It is no doubt that AI will indeed have a strong impact on enhancing key areas of 5G network, such as service quality, simplified deployment, higher network efficiency, and improved network security against malicious attacks. For instance, by detecting unusual spectrum usage, AI has the ability to detect anomalies in network traffic, such as impersonation.
At the same time, on-device AI is going to improve the end-to-end system of 5G. With the radio awareness facilitated by AI, we will be able to perform a variety of improvements on 5G devices, such as intelligent power management, improved system performance for efficient mobility & spectrum utilization, and better radio security.
Applying AI to both the 5G network and the device will lead to more efficient wireless communications, longer battery life, and enhanced user experiences. AI is a powerful tool, and the key to harnessing AI to improve wireless is to focus on important wireless challenges that are both difficult to solve with traditional methods and are also a good fit for machine learning.
5G is making AI-powered Experience Better
Similarly, the low latency & high bandwidth capacity powered by 5G will allow AI processing to be distributed among the device, edge cloud, and central cloud. This will enable flexible system solutions for a variety of new and enhanced experiences. We may be able to see 5G making AI-enhanced experiences in scenarios such as personalized retail. The combination of XR, intuitive virtual assistant, vastly improved UI, and adaptive optimization will deliver an AI experience that we’ve never imagined possible.
Let’s think about how retail shopping might look like in the future. Boundless extended reality (XR), rendering and AI processing workloads can be split between the device and edge cloud over a low-latency 5G link. During window shopping, we can envision a highly personalized shopping experience, where everything you’re seeing is of interest to you. That means seeing clothes that match your personal taste, your interest in a particular sale, or a gift for a specific person. This will make shopping experience much more engaging and time-saving for the buyer, while also cost-efficient and targeted for the retail owners.
The world is changing in dramatic ways, and so does the future of technology in the hands of 5G and AI. The intelligent wireless edge will not only enhance existing use cases but also enable new use cases. AI and 5G has the power to carry our generation to a world beyond limitations, widely opening the doors of an exciting future for us. The winners will be businesses that are able to embrace AI and 5G, and those who are always ready to adapt with changes.